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California Democrats Ramp Up War On Plastic Bags After First Ban Failed Spectacularly

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Jeff Charles Contributor
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California lawmakers are reimagining the state’s ban on plastic bags, according to Fox News.

The state legislature voted to jettison reusable plastic bags after the ban failed to reduce pollution, the report noted. In a statement, Democratic State Sen. Catherine Blakespear, who authored the bill, acknowledged that the Golden State’s ban “hasn’t worked out as planned, and sadly, the state’s plastic bag waste has increased dramatically since it went into effect.”

“California must do its part to eliminate this scourge that is contaminating our environment,” she added.

California’s State Senate and State Assembly voted Tuesday in favor of two bills that would prohibit grocers from providing “reusable” bags that are made out of plastic film to their customers, according to Fox News. The legislation would allow stores to offer reusable bags made of cloth or other non-plastic materials. (RELATED: Plastic bag ban leads to nationwide increase in shoplifting rates)

New Jersey learned a similar lesson after imposing a ban on plastic bags in 2022, the Daily Caller reported. The ban led to a 60 percent reduction in the use of single-use plastic bags. But this increased consumption of plastic by almost 300 percent to manufacture replacements.

In her statement, Blakespear notes that reusable plastic bags are difficult to recycle, which means they are rarely recycled or reused. These bags typically have a lifespan of about 12 minutes before being discarded.

The California Public Interest Research Group (CALPIRG) also highlighted the failure of resuable plastic bags to reduce pollution. There has been a 47 percent rise in plastic bag waste tonnage since 2014 despite the ban, the organization explained, according to Fox News. “California’s current bag law, which allows businesses to replace thin plastic bags with supposedly reusable ones at checkout, clearly is not working,” said Jenn Engstrom, CALPIRG’s state director.