Environmental groups are hoping Ireland’s success on plastic bag bans, which started five years ago, could be a catalyst for other countries to follow.
According to this article from the New York Times, (kudos to my colleague Fred Seelig for sharing it!), plastic bag use in Ireland dropped 94% within weeks when the 33 cent-per-bag tax rule was implemented.
Irish plastic bag users are now considered losers. Even paper bags are being taxed, the article said.
One theory of Ireland’s success is that all plastic bags in Ireland are imported, meaning no manufacturers to voice out their complaints. The article also noted Ireland’s younger population, which are flexible to changes.
Reusable cloth shopping bags are now considered the norm when shopping in Ireland.
With the growing bag bans worldwide, it seems more and more plastic bags are looking at their pending demise this year. It makes me sad as I dearly love reusing my plastic bags as trash liners after my usual impromptu grocery shopping. I hate to think I have to buy plastic garbage bags just to throw my trash.