Saturday, April 5, 2008

Seattle Mulling Plastic Bag Fee, Banning Foam Packaging

From out of the Pacific Northwest comes the City of Seattle with a sweeping plan to reduce plastic waste.
Some highlights:



PROPOSED: A 20-cent green fee on disposable shopping bags, both paper and plastic.

WHERE: Grocery, drug and convenience stores.

WHEN: To begin Jan. 1.

EXEMPT: Bags used inside stores to contain bulk items, bags for prepared food, newspaper and dry-cleaner bags.

WHY: Seattleites use 360 million disposable paper and plastic shopping bags every year. Almost 240 million end up in the garbage. That's close to 4 percent of all residential garbage, by volume. This will save 4,000 tons of greenhouse gases per year, the same as taking 665 cars off the road.


PROPOSED: A ban on the use of expanded polystyrene (sometimes called Styrofoam) containers and cups.

WHERE: All food service businesses, including some of the foam packaging used in grocery stores, such as meat trays and egg cartons.

WHEN: To begin Jan. 1.


PROPOSED: Switch from one-time-use, disposable plastic and plastic-coated paper food and beverage containers and utensils to fully compostable and recyclable substitutes.

WHERE: All food service businesses.

WHEN: By July 1, 2010

Read the entire article here.