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X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
X-Ray Mag #62 - Sep 2014
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California enacts a statewide ban on single-use plastic bags

This decision marks the first time a U.S. state has passed a statewide ban on single-use plastic bags!
Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday signed the nation's first statewide ban on single-use plastic bags at grocery and convenience stores, driven to action by pollution in streets and waterways.
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Under SB270, plastic bags will be phased out of checkout counters at large grocery stores and supermarkets such as Wal-Mart and Target starting next summer, and convenience stores and pharmacies in 2016. The law does not apply to bags used for fruits, vegetables or meats, or to shopping bags used at other retailers. It allows grocers to charge a fee of at least 10 cents for using paper bags.

A national coalition of plastic bag manufacturers immediately said it would seek a voter referendum to repeal the law.

The law marks a major milestone for environmental activists who have successfully pushed plastic bag bans in cities across the U.S., including Chicago, Austin and Seattle. Hawaii is also on track to have a de-facto statewide ban, with all counties approving prohibitions.

"This bill is a step in the right direction — it reduces the torrent of plastic polluting our beaches, parks and even the vast ocean itself," Brown said in a signing statement. "We're the first to ban these bags, and we won't be the last."

In 2007 the Ocean Protection Council convened a California Marine Debris Steering Committee to produce a plan for California to reduce and prevent ocean litter. One of the priority actions identified for producing measurable success was to prohibit specific types of packaging that commonly become litter, such as single-use grocery bags.

Every year Californian’s use billions of plastic grocery bags, many of which become litter and clog our waterways and beaches. Bags are the most common dangerous debris item, capable of harming wildlife and humans.

State Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles, credits the momentum for statewide legislation to the more than 100 cities and counties, including Los Angeles and San Francisco, that already have such bans.

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