Love It: That a plastic bag tax in Ireland has curbed plastic bag use by 94%, according to a recent New York Times article. This just goes to show that with a little persuasion people can be convinced to change their ways and kick bad habits. Unfortunately, it sounds like it's difficult to get plastic bag taxes passed because of "heated opposition from manufacturers as well as from merchants, who have said a tax would be bad for business." Now, I understand the manufacturers point of view, but the merchants are just wrong. People will buy stuff regardless of whether they have to bring their own bags. They just have to adjust the way they do things a little bit.
Hate It: That there is a swirling vortex of plastic trash known as the North Pacific Gyre circulating in the Pacific Ocean. Researchers have found that plastic debris in samples from the vortex exceeded that of zooplankton by six times, and that birds and marine life often mistake plastic for food and consume it, thereby introducing plastic into the food chain. Gross! Check out a blog by the researchers studying the Gyre.
Love It: That Whole Foods is ending plastic bag distribution. I think Whole Foods is making a bold move by doing this, and I truly commend the organization for sticking its head out and taking this step. Check out the letter that I wrote to Whole Foods in support.
Hate It: That it is almost impossible to avoid plastic at the grocery store. It's even hidden in places where you least expect it. Fake Plastic Fish did a great and informative post about this a while back.
I've found that to avoid plastic, you've gotta load up on fresh fruits and veggies, buy from bulk bins, bring your own grocery and produce bags, and have meat and cheese either wrapped in paper or put into containers brought from home. You can also buy milk in reusable glass bottles, although since I can't get organic milk in glass, I' ve been buying Organic Valley in a paper carton with a plastic liner.
- What environment-related things do you love? Hate?
- What do you think of the idea of taxing plastic bags?
- What are you doing to avoid plastic these days?