Wednesday, July 24, 2024
HomenewsTwo More States Are Banning Walmart's Single-Use Bags

Two More States Are Banning Walmart’s Single-Use Bags

Since the late 1950s, plastic bags have been used, but they truly took off in the 1960s, accounting for 80% of all food bags used in retailers by 1996. These bags were regarded as a tremendous convenience because they could contain more products and were more durable and sturdy than paper bags.

They might be used as a trash bag or more conveniently crumpled up and stored. But back then, customers weren’t aware of how such a simple thing would affect the environment. According to the International Bar Association, there is a long list of harm that plastic bags cause, including clogging stormwater drains, taking years to degrade, producing harmful chemicals when burned, and even killing animals that become entangled in them.

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, “the largest of six gyres in the world’s oceans where huge volumes of plastic debris have accumulated,” was first brought to light by researcher Charles Moore in 1997. According to the UN Environment Program, Bangladesh was the first nation to outlaw plastic bags five years later. It has taken a while for other nations to catch up, though. According to Statista, 77 nations had at least partially outlawed single-use plastic bags as of July 2021.

Businesses are also responsible for the declining use of plastic bags. Walmart stated that it will start eliminating single-use plastic bags in more places on January 18 in an effort to reach its goal of “zero waste” by 2025, according to Insider. Walmart has already banned plastic bags in some jurisdictions.

Consumers Have Mixed Reactions About the Bag Ban

Walmart reusable shopping bags

In a press release from 2020 outlining Walmart’s transition to more environmentally friendly shopping bags, Anna Vinogradova, the company’s director of sustainability, noted that “less than 10% of the 100 billion plastic bags used yearly in the U.S. alone are recycled.”

Since then, the chain’s locations in Vermont, Maine, New Jersey, and Canada have stopped offering plastic bags. More recently, Walmart declared that by January 18, plastic bags would no longer be available in Colorado and New York.

Naturally, shoppers at Walmart will need to keep in mind to bring their own bags or be ready to prepare to purchase a reusable one from the store. The company’s new regulations, according to their detractors, have only produced a new conundrum.

Walmart Canada presently gives reusable bags to delivery customers, but the retailer lacks a procedure for gathering the bags and redistributing them. These are piling up in people’s homes as a result. Larry Grant, a Toronto resident, told CBC that he had over 300 reusable bags from the retailer in his possession after six months.

Similar problems also occurred in New Jersey. Although the plastic bag ban is commendable, customers told CBC that the store had simply “replaced one environmental problem with another,” and they hoped the retailer would find a solution soon.

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