Take the Pledge: Say No to the Bag
While many of my neighbors are grumbling, I’m celebrating. Our county, Montgomery County, Maryland, recently passed a bag tax to encourage consumers to bring their own bags to the supermarket by asking stores to charge customers 5 cents for disposable bags.
Plastic bags are littering our waterways, strangling wildlife, and increasing our demand for oil (plastic bags are made from petroleum). (For more on the problem, click here.) When I’ve grocery shopped lately, I’ve noticed so many more people are bringing their own reusable bags, and many markets sell or give away inexpensive bags to encourage customers to use them (and gain a little free advertising in the process.)
When I first started using reusable bags, I had a hard time remembering to bring them into the store. Now both of the supermarkets where I regularly shop, Trader Joe’s and Chevy Chase Supermarket, have posted signs reminding shoppers to bring the bags in from the car. (Tip: I recommend returning the bags to the car as soon as you have unloaded the groceries.)
I’ve become so anti-bag that I’ve gone a step further and have started bringing reusable bags on all my errands. I even keep a bag like this in my purse in case I run an unexpected errand.
One of my pet peeves is that the clerks at many stores don’t ask customers whether they need a bag for their purchases before giving them one. I believe this simple step, which some stores have adopted, would greatly reduce the number of bags that need to be produced and are later added to landfills or blow away and become litter. After all, when you buy one book at a bookstore or a pack of gum at a drugstore, do you really need a bag to carry it?
Scramblers, if you agree with me about the need to reduce our disposable bag consumption, will you join me and “Say No to the Bag”? If so, take the pledge on the Scramblog by leaving a comment below, and tell me how you have reduced or plan to reduce your use of disposable bags. Thank you for joining me in trying to clean up our precious planet!