60,000 Plastic Bags -
The number used in the U.S. in 5 Seconds according to this artist
Did I mention that I love this city? On Monday the Seattle City Council voted 6-1 to approve a 20-cent charge for paper or plastic disposable shopping bags. And it gets better: they’re going to send each household of the city at least one free reusable bag.
They’re also working with food banks, the food stamp program, and other services to get more bags to low-income families and seniors. Food banks will be accepting donations of the bags as well.
Over the next year, the number of bags used in Seattle is expected to decrease by at least 184 million bags. Over a 30-year period, the change is expected to cut greenhouse gases by 112,000 tons.
In a vote 7-0, the Council also voted to ban plastic foam take-out containers and grocery store packaging. The Bag Fee and Foam Ban will begin on January 1, 2009.
Julia Steinberger at WorldChanging Seattle has a good point: it’s not enough. But I think it’s a good thing – it raises awareness, it sets an example for other cities, it is a stepping stone for other positive change.
Detail of the image above
What Do You Think?
Do you use reusable bags? Do you think this Bag Fee is a good thing? Do you think it will hurt the local economy in a time of recession (this is one of the arguments against it)?
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