By Fredrica Syren
Coming from Sweden, I’ve always been so proud of how “green” and clean Sweden is. The majority of people here are so aware of how to live a green life. Most of the population recycle, reuse and reduce. They favor public transportation or bikes, do not overconsume, and like to buy local as much as possible. But the number of plastic bags there are everywhere drives me nuts. Having lived in California now for a long time, I have grown accustomed to the spreading phenomena of banning the plastic bag. Many countries throughout the world and a handful of American cities are discouraging the use of plastic bags, even banning them altogether. The best part is that we seem to survive without them.
Single-use plastic bags are a huge threat to the environment because they’re not biodegradable, so they can take 1,000 years to break down in a landfill and will in that time pollute both soil and water. Plastic bags are made from a non-renewable natural resource, petroleum. And the production of plastic bags requires millions of gallons of petroleum, which could be used for transportation or heating.
Too many plastic bags end up in the ocean and pose a danger to marine wildlife. Birds and marine animals can ingest or get entangled in plastic bags that are floating around. It’s estimated that about 100,000 marine animals die each year due to plastic trash in our North Pacific Ocean alone.
Say no to plastic bags when shopping anywhere. Stop using plastic bags for storing food. Use an eco-bag when buying fresh produce or bulk foods. Buy a reusable shopping bag today!
Here are some links to finding reusable bags: