A California plastic bag ban will represent the first statewide law put into effect. On Friday, the state’s legislature voted on a ban on plastic grocery bags, which concludes the two-year session on the measure. If the bill is signed, all grocery plastic bags will be banned.
Reuters reports that the California Senate voted 22-15 for the bill. The next phase is having the bill signed by Democratic Governor Jerry Brown, with the deadline being September 30th. State Senator Alex Padilla sponsored the bill.
“Single-use plastic bags not only litter our beaches, but also our mountains, our deserts, and our rivers, streams and lakes,” Padilla says.
With the support of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, the bill passed.
The California plastic bag ban would prohibit grocery stores from giving customers single-use bags. They won’t be allowed to pay bag manufacturers “to retool to make heavier, multiple-use bags that customers could buy,” according to the report.
Grocery stores have used plastic bags because they’re less expensive than paper bags, but environmental concerns exist with the non-biodegradable material used to make the bags. They pollute land, streams, lakes, rivers, and are swept out to sea. It poses a very real environmental threat.