I'm delighted to hear that the California legislature is consider to ban the use of plastic and some paper bags from retails. If the law passes, we will be joining other nations like Ireland and China in curbing irresponsible use of disposables and reduce the pollution to the environment.
Three years ago, over the objection of California Grocers Association, San Francisco was the first city in California to ban the use of plastic bags in large stores. Like many progressive ideas sprout from this city, it seems too radical to some people at the time. Business groups opposed and loud mouthed critics spare no effort to ridicule San Francisco. But time and again, what appear as crazy ideas at the beginning get wide acceptance eventually. Remember things like recycling and gay right. Before they get wide acceptance today, they were fiercely opposed and ridiculed at the beginning. After San Francisco, a few cities like Oakland quickly joined to ban plastic bag. Finally it spreads to the entire state. This time the California Grocers Association has turned around to support the registration. It only take them 3 years!
The final opponent to this bill is none other than the plastic industry. I want to take aim at their fallacious claim this will result in higher prices to consumers. The most important point is the cost of disposable bags will be trivial compare to cost of goods. That's why retails are willing to hand out bags freely in the first place. But if the ban of plastic bag has any effect on price at all, it should lower it. 'Free' plastic bags are after all, not free. Their cost are just part of the retailer's business cost and will be reflected in the price.
If I'm plastic bag manufacturers, I would consider switching gear to other high value product like tote bags, which can sell for $10 or more. Why be the bad guy producing millions of plastic bags at low margin and pollute the environment? Stop making product for pennies and start making high margin product! It is good for your bottom line and it is good for your karma.
2010.06.02 comments -