while energy policy falters, plastic bag laws multiply

by:Sengtor     2020-03-04
This story is part of a special series to explore energy issues.
For more, please visit the huge energy challenges.
Archaeologists working in the Egyptian desert called them desert flowers.
The besieged city residents called them the city\'s wind and rolling grass.
Plastic shopping bags are everywhere, fragile, translucent and cheap to produce and look almost free.
But, thanks to the widespread presence of bag litter and the less obvious concerns about the energy coming into production, the rebound is intensifying. (
Related: Green Guide)
Around the world, plastic bags have become the target of people who believe that plastic bags are both a universal symbol of throwing --
Serious environmental problems.
In India and Bangladesh, in some cities, bags are banned from use due to the blockage of rain discharge, resulting in deadly floods.
Bags that end up falling into the ocean are a fatal danger to turtles and other fish who mistake them for jellyfish.
According to US media reportsN.
According to the environmental plan, 260 animals are known to have accidentally eaten plastic or caught in plastic.
In the past decade, bans and taxes aimed at reducing or eliminating the consumption of pouches have swept the world.
Of course, the plastics industry continues to challenge these measures and has had a heated debate on environmental and energy benefits.
However, there is an irresistible call for action, especially given the difficulties faced by governments in developing more comprehensive and complex energy and climate change policies.
The bottom line is: the tax package and the ban are simple and effective.
Bags filled with energy plastic shopping bags are usually made of polyethylene, which is produced when long chemical chains in processed natural gas or oil are combined with pressure and heat.
Over the years, thanks to natural gas or oil raw materials and manufacturing energy, efforts have been made to assess how much fuel is embedded in plastic bags.
In the view of some, the Australian government is one of the most comprehensive studies on this issue, and it concluded in 2002 that one grocery trip a week a year, 10 bags a time, it will result in an embedded energy consumption of 210 megajoules, equivalent to 1 megajoules. 75 gallons (6. 6 liters)
The emissions of gasoline are 13 pounds (6. 06 kilograms)of CO2.
It is even more difficult to say how such energy use has increased globally.
In general, plastic accounts for only a small portion of fuel use;
Plastic manufacturing, for example, accounts for only about 5% of America. S.
Consumption of oil.
However, the annual reduction of about 500 billion to 1 trillion plastic bags used worldwide is an opportunity to benefit from consumption, especially when this particular oil and gas product is so easily reusable bag
In addition, although the energy entering the plastic bag is invisible, the garbage generated due to improper handling is inevitable.
So last year, despite the fact that in California, the parcel tax was defeated by a narrow margin, coastal communities in Long Beach, San Francisco, and Carmel banned littering.
Bag bans and taxes are a hot topic in the United States, and more communities are discussing whether to implement these bans and taxes.
While this measure is most common at the community level, a few states are also trying to ban the most obvious from Washington, DC. C. , and Oregon.
Washington, D. C. C.
The tax that came into effect last year was levied 5-
Plastic and paper shopping bags charge a penny.
According to official estimates, 22 of the city\'s 600,000 residents are in use.
Before the tax is in place, 5 million bags per month.
Later, the number dropped to 4.
£ 6 million per month, down 80%, also brought $2 to the city.
Annual revenue of £ 75 million for river cleaning. .
Ireland has adopted a similar strategy, with authorities starting to charge consumers. 15 euro (about 20 cents)
Every bag in March 2002.
Fees cannot be absorbed by the store and must appear on the customer\'s receipt as a separate item.
The proceeds are used to support a special fund for environmental services.
The impact is significant and direct.
In a few months, shoppers in Ireland have grown from using plastic bags at 328 per person per year to just 21.
It\'s a very dramatic autumn.
William Calbert said he was an official in the Irish Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government.
Before the collection, some supermarkets were recycled on a voluntary basis, which was not successful.
The difference is taxation.
Mr. Carbert said that fees have changed the behavior of consumers and the practice of shops.
Stores are starting to sell again
Available bags, many discount stores stop carrying bags, but take out the old cardboard box for customers to use.
Nowadays, people who buy bags usually shop spontaneously.
You\'ll always have a situation where you only buy a few things, you forget your bag in the car, or whatever, says Calbert.
Irish officials estimate that postage charges are reduced by one billion a year, and a recent survey shows that they are strongly supported by the public.
The plastics industry believes that bans and taxes will backfire.
Instead, they believe that expanding recycling plans are like bins outside many supermarkets, taking plastic bags and shrinking
Packaging and other plastic packaging is a better way to deal with the problem of plastic waste.
The industry insists that banning plastic bags will prevent supermarkets from collecting points for plastic installation, which will not only slow the recycling of plastic bags, but also slow the recycling of other plastics.
\"Bans and taxes eliminate the collection infrastructure,\" said Keith Christman, general manager of the plastics market at the US chemical Commission, a chemical industry lobby group that includes plastics.
If there are bags outside, why do stores put recycling bins?
Studies have shown that plastic bags are actually lower than the carbon footprint of paper, which is made of trees that need to be cut down, pulped and heated at high temperatures.
Even reusable bags were reviewed.
Earlier this year, London\'s Independent reported that a draft study by the British environmental authorities suggested that cotton bags may have a greater impact than the carbon normally assumed;
The benefits of reusable bags depend on how often consumers use them before they are discarded.
Even though they look ubiquitous, in the United States, bags represent only a small fraction of the waste, about half the amount thrown away every day, Christman said.
This is an important symbolic step, but their symbolic importance is enormous due to the visibility of bags visibility.
Environmental activists believe that voluntary projects are just not cutting spending.
Yes, there are recycling projects, said Daniel dimitlova Russo, executive director of the plastic pollution alliance.
No, no matter how many recycling plans you have implemented, they are not effective enough.
Instead, people need to be pushed, says Russo.
It doesn\'t seem like much for 15 cents or 20 cents, but buying a bag is enough for people to stop and think.
Rusrusso says charging for luggage will put the problem in front of you.
You have to make a choice. It is no longer automatic.
Some countries go even further.
Single is banned in Italy in January
Use plastic shopping bags completely.
The country has been one of the heaviest consumers in Europe, accounting for 25 of the total number of European consumers.
Eva Alessi, head of sustainable development at the World Wildlife Fund in Italy, said the Italian environment department\'s unvoted bana fair was not welcomed by retailers and consumers when it was established in January. 1.
Just a few months later, plastic bags disappeared from shops and streets in Italy.
Instead, shoppers bring their own bags or buy recycled corn.
The bags they bought.
The opinions of consumers are changing, Alessi said.
They are learning to take a gentle step on this planet. âx80x9d(
Related: More and more attention has been paid to plastic bag bans
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