Each year, it’s estimated that here in Massachusetts alone, consumers go through more than 2 billion plastic bags per year! Many of them end up as litter in our waterways, stuck in trees, or clogging storm drains. The vast remainder ends up in incinerators or landfills, while a small percentage are actually recycled.
In the latest episode of Keeping Massachusetts Beautiful, our Youtube video series, we take a deep dive into plastic bag bans. As of this writing, more than 120 Massachusetts communities have passed plastic bag ordinances, covering more than 50% of our state’s population.
Currently, the state legislature is considering a redrafted bill that would provide a consistent, single state-wide ordinance. But contrary to what you might expect, many environmental advocates—including Keep Massachusetts Beautiful—oppose this bill. That’s because this redrafted bill has some major changes from the original bill that would significantly weaken its effectiveness.
Joining the discussion are Clair Galkowski, executive director of the South Shore Recycling Cooperative and Alex Vai, volunteer vice chair for the Surfrider Foundation’s Massachusetts chapter.