Plastic bags popular for a reason — Letters to the Editor, Jan. 22, 2020

Plastic bags are popular for a reason

I’m afraid I spoke to soon when I recently took sarcastic jabs at the new plastic bag-ban.

As my wife discovered, there is already a workaround in place at Oregon Walmart stores: They now sell thicker plastic bags with the word “Reusable” printed on them.

It is accompanied by words like “Sustainable,” “Washable” and “Up to 125 uses,” which is of course a wink-wink on par with advertising a V-8 diesel truck can get “Up to 125 mpg.”

But hey, these are nice, big, green letters sure to be seen from afar, possibly to avoid getting mobbed on the spot by eco-activists.

It seems to me like it’ll only be a matter of time before other large chain stores like Fred Meyer, Safeway and others follow suit.

Like it or not, plastic bags are popular with customers because they have many secondary re-use opportunities and withstand rain without breaking — whereas paper bags fail on both accounts.

Now, maybe I’m ignorant and I’m sure there is a spreadsheet in Salem detailing the incredible impact the new ban will have on the planet.

But darn if I can see the environmental benefit of switching to thicker plastic bags with print on them.

Can you?

—Matt Danielsson



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