Mexico City bans plastic bags, so why can't Chicago?

Mexico City is the latest city to bag the plastic bag.


Last week, a ban on non-biodegradable bags went into effect in the city of almost 9 million people.

Fines can range from 1,000 to 20,000 days of minimum salary and up to 36 hours in jail.

That's harsh. But it's great to see our southern neighbor take the environment seriously.

It's time more cities in the United States follow suit.
There are 10 U.S. cities that have bans or taxes on plastic bags, according to a recent story in The New York Times.

Other countries also have similar bans, including China and Tanzania.
Cities in Australia, Italy, South Africa and Taiwan also have bans or
charge for using plastic bags.

I've noticed more people using cloth bags or other recyclable bags at
the grocery stores. They are selling them everywhere from Dominick's to

It's estimated that each city resident throws away 208 plastic bags
each year, according to the Chicago Department of Environment. Factories around the world made more than 4 trillion of these bags in 2002, according to the Worldwatch Institute.

They can take hundreds of years or more to decompose and they clog sewer systems. Animals from sea turtles to other marine mammals eat them and can be strangled by them.

If they can ban plastic bags in Mexico City, then we can start to do our part to help the environment.

Recycling plastic bags at the grocery store is not enough. The city would be wise to ban the plastic sacks or at least impose a surcharge or tax.

If we can tax bottled water, then we should do something about those dastardly bags.


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  • I avoid plastic. However, sometimes it is very useful... to clean the litter box, for example.
    I wonder if grocery stores would charge for plastic bags the demand would decrease. I have seen this in Italy...

  • I think banning them is an excellent idea, though I use them too when cleaning the litter box.

  • I think banning plastic bags is a great idea and a step in the right direction for the environment!

  • Great idea... I can't imagine the breadth of pollution coming from el DF!! It was needed.

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