(PCM) The governor of California has signed a bill that will prohibit all plastic shopping bags from being given out to customers for free. The governor claims that the bill is set to reduce the amount of plastic waste that is polluting California’s beaches, parks and oceans.
The governor goes on to say that this is not just a problem in California and while they may be the first state to completely ban the use of these bags, they most certainly will not be the last.
The law will begin to take effect starting on July 1st 2015 in both grocery stores and pharmacies. It will then expand out to include liquor stores and convenience stores by July 1st 2016. These types of stores hand out upwards of 13 million plastic bags per year!
It will be a requirement of all stores to offer customers recycled paper bags or reusable bags made out of compostable material, which will cost about ten cents per bag. Those customers who are on a food assistance program will not have to pay the ten cent charge for the bags.
There is a bit of controversy from the other side, as the American Progressive Bag Alliance claims that by banning the use of plastic bags, the companies who make these bags will suffer incredibly and it could result in the loss of nearly 30,000 jobs throughout the nation.
Those in support of the bag ban, mainly environmentalist groups, claim that it will actually save taxpayers thousands of dollars on litter cleanup. What do you think? Is the banning of plastic bags a good idea? Do you think more states will follow suit?