Modbury-A Town Without Plastic

Modbury, a sleepy little town of 1,500 residents in South Devon, has become the first town in Britain to ban plastic bags. As of May 1, customers will be allowed to bring their own plastic bags to reuse, but if they want a new bag they will have to buy one. A range of bags made of recycled cotton with organic and fairtrade certification will be available as will cheaper and biodegradeable cornstarch bags. It all started when a local resident went to Hawaii on a film shoot and was moved to tears by the impact of all the plastic rubbish on marine life. She said "It's estimated 100 billion tonnes of plastic are floating round our world's oceans entangling and being ingested by pretty much every single marine creature." When she returned to Devon she found the seas there full of plastic as well. She then set about convincing the 43 shopkeepers and traders to try this no-plastic experiment for six months. Whilst being nervous about the reaction of residents, she said that "Modbury's quite an old-fashioned town and a lot of people have wicker baskets to go out shopping anyway." So committed are the retailers that they have commissioned 2,000 official Modbury bags that will be made in India and printed in the UK with water-based organic ink. All the shops' unused plastic bags are being sent to a factory where they will be recycled into plastic furniture. There are plastic bag amnesty points being set up where people can bring all the hundreds of bags that they keep stored under the kitchen sink. :: BBC News

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