Tuesday, April 15, 2008

plastic bags

To condemn or condone plastics categorically makes no sense.

Plastics: Adored, Deplored, Ubiquitous

NYTimes April 15, 2008. By Natalie Angier

Come next Tuesday, in a move flagrantly timed to coincide with Earth Day, the Whole Foods supermarket chain will no longer offer its customers the plastic bag option. Seeing that “it can take more than 1,000 years for a plastic bag to break down in a landfill” and that “in the U.S. alone, about 100 billion plastic bags are thrown away each year,” the company said it could not in good conscience contribute to the crisis.

Bravo. Now tell me this: What am I supposed to line my garbage cans with? I always use plastic supermarket bags, and the Whole Foods ones were by far my favorites — roomy and springy enough to hold a lot of sodden waste without fear of breakage, always a plus when one is disposing of, say, fish skins or cat litter. So if I have to buy plastic bags by the box, that’s better for the environment how? Forget about paper bags for this purpose. When we were growing up in the Bronx, my older brother recently reminded me, we lined our garbage can with newspapers, a solution satisfactory to none but the roaches.



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