Bring Your Own Bag Saratoga is an initiative to change retailers’ and consumers’ dependence on single-use plastic shopping bags. Our goal is to minimize the negative impact of plastic bags on the environment, from their manufacture through the end of their brief useful life.
Our approach is to encourage an already-growing trend among consumers to rely on reusable shopping bags. We have accomplished this through outreach to local businesses, residents, and government, selling reusable bags with our logo, and by organizing a screening of the film Bag It in October 2013. This year we are launching a petition to ban single-use, thin film plastic checkout bags in the City of Saratoga Springs, following the lead of many cities that have successfully done so.
This effort is part of a worldwide movement (including countries such as Ireland, South Africa, Rwanda, and Italy); and cities across our country (including 60 or more in California, and in our region, Great Barrington, MA and Mamaroneck and Rye, NY). Hawaii recently became the first state to enact legislation prohibiting their use.
Negative Impact of Plastic Bags
- They are made from petroleum and natural gas, both limited and problematic resources.
- Over 100 billion bags are used annually in our country alone, of which only 5-15% are recycled.
- At best, those that are recycled have one role to play before they join the waste stream. They are still plastic and do not biodegrade.
- After their brief usefulness, they end up in landfills and litter our streets, lands and waterways; they kill or injure animals, interfering with a healthy food chain; they creating enormous “gyres” or islands of garbage in our oceans; they clog municipal water systems; and they leach toxic chemicals.
- While cheap to produce, the impacts of plastic bag waste are costly.
How You Can Help
- Sign the petition HERE!
- Pick up one of our reusable cloth tote bags at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market for $10.
- Donate using the button below:
Check out all these local businesses and citizens modeling our reusable bags!