“Plastic shopping bags are an enormous problem for New York City,” said Ron Gonen, the deputy commissioner of sanitation for recycling and waste reduction, noting that the city pays $10 million annually to send 100,000 tons of plastic bags that are tossed in the general trash to landfills in South Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania. That, he points out, “is amazing to think of, because a plastic bag doesn’t weigh much at all.”
Quick, how many plastic bags do you have under your sink or stuffed in a drawer in your home? Probably a lot. I bring reusable bags with me to the grocery store but still manage to have a bunch crammed under my sink (they are from the drugstore, or shops like Bed Bath and Beyond, or from all those times I randomly decided to pick up something from the grocery store and didn’t have bags with me). Some cities like Austin have already banned plastic bags, while many others have fees of five cents per bag or more to incentivize shoppers to switch to reusable ones. Also, sorry for giving you our garbage, other states.