OK, I admit it. I’m one of the people hauling groceries to my car in plastic and, occasionally, paper bags. I don’t feel especially guilty about it, either. The bags get plenty of use once the groceries get home. The sturdy paper ones are a great receptacle for kitty litter when I clean the cat box (though I’m still not sure how I ended up that chore when my wife and son promised to do all the work if I we got a cat, which somehow turned into two cats …). Some of the plastic bags go back and forth to work and school, carrying gym clothes and lunches, before getting packaged together and placed in the recycling container. The rest of them become waste basket liners. I suspect that’s pretty typical.
So what happens if the city and/or county move forward with their plans to ban plastic grocery bags? I still need to clean the litter box, so I guess Safeway and G and G get a few dimes on top of the grocery bill. A few less lunches might be good for what’s left of my physique, but I expect I’ll still be carrying a sandwich to work. And my son’s gym clothes may look and smell like they can walk but …
And about those waste baskets. It took less than one summer of composting food scraps to convince me that wet garbage – and, hey, most everything else already is recyclable – has got to be bagged or everyone near it will gag. Of course, even if a ban is adopted, stores will be free to sell plastic bags to line garbage cans. It’s just those convenient, reusable (free) ones that groceries come home in that seem to be a concern. Hmmm.
– Jim Sweeney