Interest Consumers: Do You Genuinely Require That Plastic Bag?

“The plastic bag is an approved portion of Canada’s purchasing culture, but it should not be. Every yr we use over nine billion plastic purchasing luggage in Canada. That’s 17,000 baggage a minute.”

– Greener Footprints

Canadians use 9-15 billion plastic purchasing bags each year

To get a feel for just how numerous baggage that in fact is, photograph this: if we tied 9 billion luggage jointly, they would circle the earth fifty five times (Greener Footprints).

Holy Dinah!

Each and every year it is approximated between five hundred billion and one trillion plastic luggage are used across the world. Though were not commonly utilized till the nineteen eighties, their influence has currently been felt all around the globe.

A swift stroll through your neighbourhood can frequently reveal how pervasive plastic bags are when it arrives to the difficulty of litter. Hanging from tree branches or tangled in hedges, plastic baggage have become a depressing fixture in city green spaces like parks, schoolyards, and sporting activities fields. This sort of litter is not only ugly it can also contribute to major environmental concerns.

Massive buildups of discarded plastic luggage can clog drainage programs and add to main floods. Such flooding triggered popular destruction in Bangladesh in 1988 and 1998. Manila has also been vulnerable to flooding as a result of plastic-bag clogged sewers. In 2009, much more than eighty% of the Philippines’ money was submerged. Hundreds were killed and countless numbers more have been still left homeless when whole neighbourhoods were swept absent.

Other aquatic chaos produced by plastic luggage has confirmed deadly to individuals who stay in the drinking water as nicely.

About one hundred,000 whales, seals, turtles and other marine animals are killed each calendar year by plastic bags, which can strangle their victims or result in them to starve to dying, according to World Ark, an global environmental group. A lifeless gray whale that washed ashore in Seattle in 2010 was discovered to have more than 20 plastic bags in its abdomen.

A 2012 College of British Columbia review found that ninety three for every cent of beached northern fulmars (migratory seabirds related to the albatross) had bellies total of plastic – a considerable boost from the last time they were tested, in 1980.

In reality, plastic packaging is accumulating so swiftly, it really is predicted to outnumber fish in the sea by 2050, in accordance to a current report by the Globe Financial Forum.


According to the David Suzuki Basis, “Few plastic luggage are recycled. Most are utilized for a brief time to carry groceries, and then possibly re-utilized as rubbish baggage or to wrap pet poop prior to ending up in the landfill or the ocean. Some men and women argue that, because they make up about a single for every cent of the quantity of squander in landfills, we shouldn’t worry. But one particular for every cent of the huge quantities of what is actually in landfills is a good deal, especially because plastic does not biodegrade.”

Most plastic bags are manufactured from polyethylene and can take hundreds of years to decompose.

But methods are currently being taken to decrease the environmental footprint of plastic bags. Use of plastic bags is both limited or completely banned in in excess of a quarter of the world’s countries.

China, Italy, Bangladesh, South Africa, and areas of Australia have banned plastic bags outright, even though municipal bans exist in components of India, Mexico, Britain, the U.S., and Canada.

Plastaxes – taxes on plastic luggage compensated by buyers – and new recycling regulations have also been brought in to help address the problem.

In February 2016, Walmart Canada started phasing out one particular-use shopping bags at Canadian Walmart retailers. In spot of these, customers will be presented discounted reusable bags for twenty five cents. But plastic luggage will nevertheless be offered for five cents in an energy to minimize the amount of single-use baggage they distribute.

In my neck of the woods (Sidney, British Columbia), the grocery keep I repeated doesn’t have plastic grocery bags but they do provide solitary-use brown paper luggage – or, of program, you can use reusable grocery baggage or a reusable cardboard box, specifically designed to keep the fat of groceries. My personalized desire is a box and several reusable luggage.

Though my local community is supposedly very environmentally-pleasant, I would have to say that, based mostly on my individual observations, the vast majority of the grocery keep clients nevertheless select the single-use brown paper bag in excess of the reusable bag and/or box. And I am not positive why. Ease, probably?