The revised text also deletes a section that had listed several advantages of plastic bags. Among them: that plastic grocery bags require 70 percent less energy to manufacture than paper bags, that they cost less to transport, that they can be reused and that they can be recycled and made into different products. Also deleted was a list of five questions that students could use to determine whether there were advantages to plastic shopping bags.All I can think of are the millions of gallons of fuel plastic bags have saved as compared to the use of paper sacks. And think of the tons and tons of dioxin that was circumvented by the use of plastic bags over paper sacks.
Instead, the revised guide — issued Oct. 26 — simply says that “plastic bags are durable, lightweight and take up less space than paper bags … and can be recycled.”
With regard to the plastic bag recycling rate, the new text hedges on what that rate may be, saying that “recycling rates specific to plastic shopping bags are not currently calculated by state or federal agencies.”
However, the revised guide does include a reference to a CalRecycle estimate suggesting that recycling rates for plastic bags distributed by stores in California was 3 percent in 2009; and another to an EPA estimate that the nationwide recycling rate for bags, sacks and plastic wrap is 9 percent.
Also, I think of the pristine water ways and chemicals and energy saved since polyethylene production requires little water and virually no water as part of the process like paper mills require. No river choking BOD levels.
Also, consider the VAST volumes of landfill SAVED because plastic bags (unfortunately) are landfilled INSTEAD of paper sacks.
The use of platic bags is MONUMENTAL in saving our environment and creating wealth and jobs for people.
And all of this happened because we switched from paper to plastic. We were able to eat our cake and have it, too!