Bill would make N.J. first state to ban plastic grocery bags
New Jersey will become the first state to ban the use of plastic shopping bags, according to a bill introduced by Parliament.
The measure will require supermarkets and other retailers with at least 10,000 square feet of space to phase out the bags within three years.
Herb Conaway, the sponsor of the measure, said as many as 1 trillion plastic bags are used worldwide each year.
\"Plastic bags can be cheap and convenient but expensive
\"The environmental consequences cannot be ignored,\" Dr. konaway said in a statement.
\"We need to get these bags out of the wastewater because they pollute our soil and water.
\"San Francisco became the first city in the United States to ban plastic bags in large supermarkets.
Auckland has done the same since then.
In July, California enacted a law requiring large stores to take back bags and encourage recycling.
The New York City Council also considered a proposal to call for the recycling of sacks.
Lawmakers in New Jersey say several countries have taken steps to reduce the use of plastic bags.
In 2002, they said, Ireland taxed plastic bags, reducing the use of plastic bags by 90%, while some communities in Australia have banned plastic bags from entering retail stores since 2003.
According to New Jersey legislation, large retail stores will have to reduce the use of plastic bags by 50% by December.
31. 2009, and eliminated by the end of 2010.
The store will have to provide recycling bins for collecting plastic bags and selling reusable shopping bags.
According to Conaway and his co-sponsor\'s statement on the measure, plastic bags launched in 1977 accounted for 90% of U. S. grocery bags, Democratic MP Jack Connors.
They say the bags end up being rubbish, longer than paper bags break down and hurt wildlife.
\"The statistics on the number of bags that enter the environment are absolutely amazing,\" Connors said . \".
Donna Dempsey, general manager of the Houston progressive package Alliance-
The trade organization, which represents plastic bag manufacturers, said it would be better for the environment to ask for plastic bags to be recycled than to ban them.
She said her team worked hard to raise awareness about recycling where plastic bags were initially proposed to be banned --
Including Annapolis, Maryland. ; Austin, Texas;
Instead, more stringent recycling standards are being pursued.
Alex Dmitriew, assistant recycling coordinator in San Francisco, said his city wanted the store to finally stop distributing bags.
\"We want people to start bringing their own luggage,\" he said . \"
\"It\'s not a problem with paper or plastic. issue. \"