Opinion Matters

With Gazette Opinion Editor Greg Peck

A ban on paper and plastic bags?

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Greg Peck
April 9, 2013

I saw an editorial from the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram last week that applauded the Eau Claire City Council for appointing a committee to study ways to reduce the amount of shopping bag waste in that city.

Shoppers use an estimated 21 million disposable bags annually. Some get recycled, some wind up in the landfill and others end up blowing around the city.

Some Eau Claire residents suggest a ban on all paper and plastic bags and leaving it up to customers to bring reusable bags to carry purchases. Some cities, the editorial noted, have gone this route.

I found this discussion intriguing as we head toward another Earth Day celebration on April 22. Maybe bags aren't as big an issue here in Janesville, however, particularly once our city's new automated trash and recycling collection system begins the week of April 29. You’ll be able to place paper and plastic shopping bags in your recycling bin, as The Gazette reported March 29.

Still, that doesn’t mean some slobs won’t leave some plastic bags to simply blow in the wind.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook

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