NYT reports on the efforts in the maritime city of Annapolis, Maryland to pass a bill aimed at protecting marine life and would ban plastic bags from all retail stores, not just from larger groceries and drugstores as is the case with the measure recently passed in San Francisco. Alexandra Cousteau, granddaughter of Jacques Cousteau and director of EarthEcho attended a public town meeting on Monday to support the bill aiming to help protect Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries, whose fish and birds often die after ingesting discarded plastic bags. Stores would be required to offer paper bags made from recycled material under the bill, which goes to a final City Council vote in October. While opponents attempt to argue their way out of that paper bag, saying such substitutes will raise both costs and fossil fuel use and pollution, Alderman Sam Shropshire the sponsor of the bill drops some knowledge:
To make 100 billion plastic checkout bags per year, which is how many we use in the U.S. each year, it takes 12 million barrels of oil. No oil is used to produce recycled paper checkout bags.
Additionally, a spokesman said the city planned to distribute reusable bags to residents by the fall. To accomplish that, the city is considering teaming with sail makers to use excess material that teenagers in a jobs program may sew into sacks. :: New York Times