Santa Fe hearing set on proposed reusable bag ordinance

What if you spill in the bag?
NewsNM: Swickard - we are seconds away from the next set of rules about these bags that are to be used more than once. The problem is that if they have any previous food on them they could be deadly. From the Santa Fe New Mexican - An advisory committee considering a proposal to limit the use of plastic bags in Santa Fe wants to hear from residents about the idea. No elected official has yet agreed to introduce the ordinance, and meanwhile, plastics industry representatives and large-scale retail operators have already begun lobbying against it. The city of Santa Fe’s Business and Quality of Life Committee will accept testimony on a proposed reusable bag ordinance at its 8:30 a.m. meeting Monday, Oct. 1, on the first floor of the Santa Fe Community Convention Center in the DeVargas Room. A “Grocery Bag Task Force” from the committee began working on the proposal in May after the city of Los Angeles adopted a phase-in ban on carryout bags at retail store. would call for a prohibition on “plastic carryout bags” at stores in the city and would impose a fee stores must collect if they provide paper bags. In August, the bag task force group met with “stakeholders” from Wal-Mart and Albertsons, as well as Adam Rahal, a student at Arizona State University who is conducting research on plastic bags. Rahal reported that 90 percent of the plastic bags used in the country are produced domestically using a derivative of natural gas, while the other 10 percent used here are made from oil. Rahal argued that the manufacturing of paper bags uses more water than the manufacturing of plastic bags, and said that the proposed ordinance might have the opposite effect of what is intended “because people will turn to other forms of plastic products.” The city Economic Development Division has posted a Web page with frequently asked questions about the efforts, among them, “Why are single-use plastic bags such a big deal?” The posted answer is: “Single use plastic bags present an environmental burden on society. Most ‘free’ plastic or paper bags are used for 12 minutes before being released as pollution into the environment or as waste into the landfill. Read more