I’d like to begin this letter as many before me have begun letters on similar issues: with a huge thank you to those who already make an effort to decrease plastic and paper bag use. I am proud to call Boulder my home every time I witness eco-friendly acts committed by citizens. It’s wonderful to know that composting and recycling have become parts of our everyday routines.
Compared to the rest of the country, our town is significantly greener. However, that doesn’t mean our work is done: we still use 40-50 million plastic bags per year. In 1977 plastic bags were introduced to the public. In 34 short years, they’ve taken over. It doesn’t matter if you throw them away after one use or reuse them time and time again; they’ll remain on the planet. They are not biodegradable, and there is not a big market for recycling them.
In Vitamin Cottage, Whole Foods, and Lucky’s Market one doesn’t have to look hard to find a reusable bag being used to carry groceries. But in places like Target they are a rare occurrence. It’s funny how our brains have associated reusable bags with only groceries. Fortunately, Target will happily accept your reusable tote—give it a try!
City Council will soon be taking more action on potentially banning plastic bags in Boulder. But just because there is no official ban yet doesn’t mean we can’t create our own. Try living a plastic bag free life—initially it may require some effort, but eventually plastic bags can become a thing of the past.