A small communication firm called El Viaje de Odiseo has started Buenos Aires' first informal campaign to promote reusable bags and reject plastic ones (used extensively everywhere in this city and usually in large quantities since they're thin and break easily).
"We thought about this after reading how other countries have taken measures to ban these bags. In Argentina we still don't have any laws or rules on the subject so we thought it was a good time to start the conversation," say the organizers. To spread the word, they've set up a website with information and figures of plastic waste in Argentina, started a Facebook cause, and came up with an alternative reusable fabric bag with the phrase, "I do not use plastic bags, thanks." (Which reminds us of the extremely popular I'm not a plastic bag, by Anya Hindmarch.)
The bags are produced with natural cotton by a cooperative of unemployed people called La Juanita (link in Spanish), and stamped by the street art group Run Don't Walk with non toxic paint. They sell for just 10 pesos (3 USD). "Our main goal is not selling the bag, but making this grow and encouraging people to think about the subject in order to generate some changes in our everyday life", they say. At their website, the organizers detail every aspect of the bag production, and say the difference between the cost of the bag and the retail price will be destined to a fund to finance other sustainable projects voted by the people who follow the cause.
Bags can be acquired by e-mail through the 'Quiero' section of the initiative's website.
According to figures quoted in the site, the material shopping plastic bags are made of is the garbage component that has grown the most in the last 35 years. In Argentina, 13,7% of all plastic trash in 2006 were polyethylene bags.
Links (both in Spanish):
::I do not use a plastic bag website
::El Viaje de Odiseo (organizers of the initiative)
Related posts from the archives:
::TreeHugger picks plastic bags banning initiatives
::Anya Hindmarch ultra-popular I'm not a plastic bag tote
::Anya Hindmarch tote sold-out
::All TreeHugger posts on plastic bags
::Recent green events in Buenos Aires: art exhibition and a festival for Earth Day