BYOB: Bring Your Own Bags!

Plastic bags have been a scourge to the planet for decades. Tons of bags are buried in landfills every day and they remain there for a millenium. Grocery store bags, Ziploc bags, and trash bags. As the plastic breaks down, it decomposes into toxic particles that contaminate soil and water. Although they seem insignificant in our lifetime, plastic bags will be poisoning our world well after we pass. The production of the bags contaminates the atmosphere with noxious gases that are harmful to our health.

Paper bags are also a big problem. Deforestation is a crippling side effect of our culture of consumption. Cutting down trees requires a substantial amount of energy and releases dangerous amounts of greenhouse gases. Without the trees, there is nothing to absorb the greenhouse gases that are thundering through the atmosphere.

Reusing or recycling paper or plastic bags is a wasted effort, because it actually requires more energy than making them. Decent reusable bags are available almost everywhere and are always reasonably priced, or often given away for free at events. Incorporating reusable bags into your routine allows you to be less dependent on plastic and paper bags, saving the world waste and pollution.

There’s really no excuse for not having reusable bags. They’re cheap, they’re larger than plastic bags, they’re more durable, and they fold up. In Philly, Whole Foods and Target will give you a discount when you bring your own bag. Meanwhile Trader Joe’s will put you in a raffle for a $25 gift card. Reusable plastic bags are a wise investment, for the earth and its residents!

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