CLEVELAND, Ohio – Would you support a ban on plastic bags in Cuyahoga County? Legislators are considering a ban on disposable plastic bags and non-recyclable paper bags by all retail businesses in the county.
The ban would stop stores from offering plastic bags to customers. The proposed ban includes supermarkets, department stores, restaurants, and convenience stores. Likewise, it would only allow retailers to use reusable or paper bags.
Even though the ban is a step in the right direction, some have expressed concern that paper bags also create environmental problems. However, legislators say that stores should only use paper bags to transition towards reusable ones. Ultimately, the goal is for all stores to be plastic and paper bag free.
Moreover, if passed, the proposed ban would subject first-time violators to a written warning. Subsequent violations would carry fines up to $500 dollars. Residents and consumer affairs employees are expected to report complaints.
The ban is set to go into effect on October 1st. This would allow retailers to use their current supply of plastic bags. Additionally, this would allow for community leaders to educate residents on the need for the law.
Finally, most should agree that this legislation is very necessary. Plastic breaks down in the ocean and kills sea-life. On land, plastic bags clog sewers and landfills. Most alarming of all is the fact that only 10 percent of plastic on earth is recycled. People should do anything they can to help curb this environmental damage. In Cuyahoga alone, residents use 319 million plastic bags a year. That’s 5.5 million pounds of plastic that pollutes Lake Erie each year.
So, do you believe that citizens should take action against pollution by supporting Cuyahoga’s ban on plastic bags? Please let us know more about your feelings in the comments.