Saturday, January 26, 2008

Going Green: Grocery Bags

From the Sierra Club:

In New York City alone, one less grocery bag per person per year would reduce waste by 109 tons and save $11,000 in disposal costs.

Plastic bags carry 80% of the nation's groceries, up from 5% in 1982.
When 1 ton of paper bags is reused or recycled, 3 cubic meters of landfill space is saved and 13 - 17 trees are spared! In 1997, 955,000 tons of paper bags were used in the United States.

When 1 ton of plastic bags is reused or recycled, the energy equivalent of 11 barrels of oil are saved.

Reusing a bag meant for just one use has a big impact. A sturdy, reusable bag needs only be used 11 times to have a lower environmental impact than using 11 disposable plastic bags.


The solution? Canvas bags. I keep a stash in the trunk of my car, just in case I decide to run to the grocery store. They're reusable and washer friendly. A one time investment - even better!

Other Resources:
National Geographic
Reusable Bags

4 comments:

Hanlie said...

I must really buy some more of those reusable ones! Thanks for reminding me.

Kate said...

I'm really committed to this myself. I think it's very important, and I like to see stores promoting reusable bags in some way. I hear that San Francisco now has banned (or is trying to ban) plastic bags entirely.

Lidian said...

We use these too - it is such a good idea.

Scale Junkie said...

The last time I went to the store to use them the guy bagging my groceries was putting everything into plastic bags and then into my canvas bags...I wanted to thunk him on the forehead!!!

I buy canvas bags at yard sales and wash them to use. I don't have many but I'm building my collection...remembering to bring them with me is the hard part. Several always end up in the wash after each use because if they get damp I have to wash them...I'm a freak about things like that