The August 4 issue of Rolling Stone (of all places!) includes an amazing article by Kitt Doucette about the lack of importance the US places on curbing—nevermind eliminating—single use disposable bags. Did you read it? Are you angry? You should be!
Guinness World Records has named plastic shopping bags as “the most ubiquitous consumer item in the world.” As we’ve been saying for a long time, they are also a leading source of pollution.
But did you know that while the rest of the developed world is fighting to curb or eliminate plastic bag usage, the US plastics industry is doing whatever it takes to defeat anti-bag measures nationwide? Among their tactics: political donations, intensive lobbying, misleading PR campaigns, and lawsuits.
In Doucette’s article, these bold moves are likened to Big Tobacco. And when you read the article, you will understand why. Further, the US government has left state and local governments to fend for themselves—while other nations are working as a collective whole to address the problem.
So what now? How do we move forward against a plastics industry with money to burn? According to Doucette, we need to keep pushing the issue. Public awareness and the grassroots movements will triumph in the end. We sure do hope so.
Missed this must-read article? Read Plastic Bag Wars in Rolling Stone now. And, thanks to Alessandro Digaetano/Polaris for the photo.