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Saturday, 14 September 2013

The Plastic Bag Tax

Bring it on!

From 2015, shops will be required by law to charge 5p to customers for a 'single use' plastic bag.

Ok, so I know they are not actually single use, in that we often use plastic bags for other things than just to get our shopping home.  But the point is, by having this system of being able to use brand new bags each time we shop it's creating a huge environmental problem.

A while ago, Sainsbury's removed their 'single use' plastic bags from the tills and just had the 'Bag for Life' bags available which cost 10p.  But for reasons I'm not party to (but probably involving being scared to lose customers to supermarkets that didn't follow suit) they stopped the initiative and back came the plastic bags, cluttering up the till area and cramping our packing space.

It is just so much nicer in France where there are no bags at all in the packing area of the till.  And people, funnily enough, don't seem to forget their shopping bags.   Well, if your only alternative is to go to the customer service desk, queue up behind all the people who need their complicated enquiries answered, and wait to be served, so you can purchase a sturdy and quite pricey shopping bag, then you're unlikely to forget a second time, right?

Now, I've heard people arguing for the need to get a constant weekly supply of shopping bags, just in case they run out at home.  Well, I've used reusable shopping bags for at least 5 years now - probably nearer ten - and, d'you know what?  I still have a whole stash of single use carrier bags in my recycling cupboard - despite twice taking several bags to my local charity shop.  All these bags are just the ones left by other people bringing stuff into my house in single use plastic bags.

Maybe once the tax comes into place, my plastic bag holder will become redundant, but I guess they mount up because I don't find a use for them very often.

You've got two years to practise!  The law doesn't come in until the autumn of 2015.  All you need to do, is follow two tips from my book, 101 Ways to Live Cleaner and Greener for Free.

Simples, says the Meerkat!

For more waste reduction tips that save you a fortune too, you could buy the book!

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