The Solution already works
A study by San Jose, California found that a 2011 ban instituted there has led to plastic litter reduction of “approximately 89 percent in the storm drain system, 60 percent in the creeks and rivers, and 59 percent in City streets and neighborhoods.”
The City of Portland, OR made huge strides in cutting down on the plastic bag waste-stream, about 8.5 million fewer plastic bags per month.
In Washington DC a bag fee was placed on plastic bags and the little 5 cents shifted consumers from an estimated 270 million bags per year to 55 million bags per year. The businesses that reported, estimated a range of bag use down by 50%-80%.
Ireland passed a plastic bag tax in 2002 – now 22 euro cents, about 33 U.S. cents – at the register if you want one with your purchases. There was an advertising awareness campaign. Then something happened that was bigger than the sum of these parts. Within weeks, there was a 94 percent drop in plastic bag use. Within a year, nearly everyone bought reusable cloth bags, which they now keep in the office and the back of their cars. Plastic bags became socially unacceptable – on par with wearing a fur coat or not cleaning up after your dog.
A solution is possible!
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