Free Shopping Bag Ban Now Effective in Sacramento, CA

Connector Winter 2016

Sacramento is now the 146th California municipality to adopt a shopping bags ban, meaning shoppers at grocery stores, convenience stores, and large pharmacies must bring their own bags or other containers, or pay 10 cents for a paper or reusable plastic bag.

The Sacramento City Council unanimously approved the ban after a similar state law was put on hold, pending the outcome of a referendum to overturn the legislation. The plastic bag industry has invested $3 million to get the anti-bag ban referendum on this coming November’s ballot. If voters overturn the state law, Sacramento’s ban will remain in effect. Elsewhere, the referendum must be voted down for the state law to take precedence.

More than a third of Californians are now subject to a bag ban, including in Davis, Chico, Truckee, Nevada City, and South Lake Tahoe.

Environmentalists and Sacramento officials say the bags are burdening their landfills, littering their roads and waterways, and clogging recycling machinery. Conversely, the plastic bag industry said the law will have no environmental benefit but rather fill the pockets of retailers at shoppers’ expense. Huntington Beach recently repealed its instituted plastic bag ban.

Source: Waste Dive