What's it gonna take to completely bag the plastic bag? by Gia Machlin, January 15 2010, 1 Comment
It still amazes me - our obsession with plastic bags. Yesterday I was at Duane Reade (the New York version of CVS, Walgreens, whatever pharmacy/convenience store you have in your neck of the woods) and the guy ahead of me at the cashier buys a bag of chips, stands there while the clerk puts them in a plastic bag, takes the bag and walks towards the exit, takes the bag of chips out of the plastic bag, and throws the bag in the trash on the way out!! Seriously! I wanted to run after him and say - are you kidding me? I'm actually not sure why I didn't, but some rare bit of self control held me back.
Then there are the folks I see every day, walking up Broadway with their groceries, plastic bags hanging from each hand - when I am SURE they have tons of reusable bags at home somewhere. I want to just sneer at them and say - why do you think it's not your responsibility to take care of the planet? But I don't. Why? Because they would think I was a complete whackadoo, for one. But more so because they probably just haven't made the shift in their mind to thinking about the consequences of their actions. Or they might have just forgotten to bring their canvas bags today. Or maybe they have something important or very sad, or disturbing on their mind. It's all part of the MIGG syndrome (which I haven't mentioned in a while, but is really the theme of this blog). As a reminder, MIGGs are people who basically don't take an active role in sustainable living because they are busy, have pressing things on their minds, feel like a drop in the bucket and are confused by all the conflicting data out there.
I'd like to make a challenge. This challenge is really for the MIGGS out there, and since many of the EcoPlum blog's subscribers are reformed MIGGs, like me, or even true greenies, please share this with your MIGG friends:
I challenge you to do this ONE thing: try to stop using disposable plastic shopping bags JUST THIS WEEK. What will you use? C'mon, I'm sure you have some canvas or other reusable bags at home. No? Then the first 5 of you to email firstname.lastname@example.org with BAG CHALLENGE in the subject line get a FREE EcoPlum Chicobag.
Then, send us a picture of you with your REUSABLE BAG, and we'll post it on our FLICKR site. Deal?
And here are some facts to inspire you:
- Approximately 100 BILLION plastic shopping bags are used in the U.S. every year. Only 1 to 3% of these are recycled.
- This costs retailers about $4 BILLION annually.
- Plastic bags break down into small toxic particles that contaminate both soil and water and end up in our food chain. Hundreds of thousands of whales, dolphins, sea turtles and other marine mammals die every year after eating discarded plastic bags they mistake for food.
BUY your EcoPlum Chicobag now!