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  • July 26th is Ban the Philadelphia Plastic Bag Day: Sign the Petition philly-plastic-bag-ban-bloggers-unite Full view

    July 26th is Ban the Philadelphia Plastic Bag Day: Sign the Petition

    Ban plastic bags in philly and sign our online petition!Today, we’re dishing the dirty truth about plastic bags.

    Each year…

    We’ve all been there: Sitting at a game or park, or walking around our neighborhoods to spot a plastic bag blowing in the wind. Philadelphia has enough litter, and a plastic bag ban is crucial to Philadelphia’s green movement. Plastic bags take 1000 years to break down, they endanger wildlife, pollute our cities, ground & waterways.

    Philadelphia voted and rejected a plastic bag ban in June 2009. Yet, Mayor Nutter has declared consistently that Philly is going to be the #1 greenest city in the US.
    We, Green Philly Blog, were frustrated with this defeat 3 years ago, but decided to unite our amazing Philadelphia Bloggers to address this issue on their blogs, social media outlets and in person. Together, we can reach a wide audience of Philadelphians.

    How can you help?

    • Take 2 minutes and sign your name on our Plastic Bag Petition.

    • Share the petition!
    • Bring your own reusable bag whenever you shop. And just say “no thanks” to plastic. 🙂
    • We’ll do a recap on Friday, July 27th and send the full list to Mayor Nutter, Director of Sustainability Katherine Gajewski and City Council.

    Although this is a crucial step, we know this is step one of our initiative. Don’t worry, we’re not stopping here and will continue to fight for a plastic bag ban in Philadelphia. But we can’t do it without your support!

    Thanks for reading and participating!

    Greening on,

    Julie & Beth

    Thank you to participating bloggers who are participating today (& Visit their sites!):

    Julie Hancher

    About Julie Hancher

    Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake.

    Your thoughts . . .

    • Pingback: Sign the Philadelphia Plastic Bag Ban Petition | Spit That Out: The Blog()

    • Pingback: Philly, it’s time to get enthusiastic about ditching those bags of plastic « Beach Chair Scientist()

    • nedster

      I suppose that if these bags are banned, I’ll just start picking up my dog’s poop with my bare hands.

      A lot of people reuse these bags for other purposes which saves us money and cuts down on the amount of plastic used. Plus, a lot of grocery stores now recycle them(http://www.plasticbagrecycling.org/01.0/s01.1.php).

      Punish all for the sins of a few!

    • Jenna

      Hi! I signed the petition and sent it to all of my Philly friends. I really think, however, that something needs to be done about the general trash in the city. Why doesn’t the city employ people to go around and collect trash EVERYWHERE? At least in the entire center city district (not just the handful of blocks that they currently cover). Can you please get a petition together for the creation of litter control jobs????

      I’m tired of hearing negativity left and right about this city. I love it and I want to stay here, but when little things such as litter aren’t taken care of and thus contribute to the bad reputation…it makes it very difficult.

    • Jenna

      Nedster – look into biodegradable bags and paper bags….

    • Nedster, I responded to the same question on my Facebook page:

      It wouldn’t eliminate SELLING plastic/bags in stores, just giving away at checkouts. As far as plastic alternatives, there’s websites that sell biodegradable ones (even though that’s debated too). Here’s a good resource for you: http://www.organicauthority.com/pets/doggone-good-question-recycled-plastic-bags-or-compostable-alternatives-for-canine-waste.html.

      Jenna, thanks for you feedback and sharing the petition! I agree that Philly has a lot of trash. However, I believe costs is probably the #1 reason why the city can’t pay to pick it up… but we also need to prevent it in the first place. That’s through 1) education and 2) trying to ban common suspects. If we can educate people (especially children), hopefully they won’t litter. Plastic bags also are lightweight and get blown around very easily. We’re trying our best to make a difference, but every person and action contributes. Please feel free to keep us updated with your feedback and suggestions!


    • nedster

      Julie – that’s exactly the point my post. I reuse the plastic bags that I get for free at the store for dog waste, trash can liners and lunch bags, etc. so that I don’t have to go out and purchase bags. It saves me money and reduces waste.

      I understand that trash in the city is an issue in general (I know because I have to sweep in front of my building at least once a week), but I just think that there are more practical alternatives such as informing people that grocery stores recycle them (because most people don’t know this) or working with the city to get them to start offering recycling services for these bags.

    • This is a great initiative!! So glad to see so many spreading awareness of ways to make the streets of Philly plastic bag free!!

    • Hey Nedster –

      There’s definitely alternatives to plastic bags for dog waste, lunch bags and more. Plus, how many times can you use a plastic bag before it breaks? Many reusable options are inexpensive – I have one that I keep on my purse every day and use it constantly… which was a free giveaway. (Also, even if plastic bags are ‘banned’ from checkouts, they will still exist… bread/bun bags, fruit bags… etc… there’s still many ‘available’ ‘free’ ones people use daily.)

      Plastic bag bans are a practical alternative and already exist in other cities. It’s cheap and easy.

      Heather, thanks for your support!

    • Pingback: Philly Don’t Need A Bag! « I Don't Need a Bag – IDNAB!()

    • This is a valiant effort but there are new technOlogies available that will allow plastics to degrade quickly and almost anywhere. Our plastics were studied by Italy along with many other “Green” plastics such as PLA, Cello and others. After two years they found that ours was
      “The only viable option available”. Italy only allows plastic bags made with this technology.
      If you ban plastic bags entirely, what else can you use?
      One truckload of plastic grocery bags = 14 truckloads of the old Paper bags. Not a good option. Consider reusable woven Polypropylene handle bags. Several studies have shown
      E-Coli, Blood and various other hazardous bateria accumulates in these spreading to your next load.
      Our Omnidegradable TM Plastics are backyard compostable and biodegrade anywhere there are Microbes, landfills,forests, rivers,lakes and oceans. A grocery bag made with this technology will degrade in months. We must look at all available options before we make decisions.

    • Pingback: Hey Philly, Ban Plastic Bags | Plastic Bag Ban Report()

    • Rita Varley

      Statistics indicate that the world uses about 1 million plastic bags every minute. The bags are permanently toxic and take over 1000 years to degrade. We need to be weaned, successfully. Let’s be creative. Outright banning appears to stir stubborn resistance, and could force switching to other disposables like paper or compostable bags which are highly energy intensive to manufacture and so not a good choice either. We need to switch mostly to reusables. .
      –How about imposing a high tax on all plastic shopping bags used to take home groceries, clothes, etc.? A dollar per bag? And a high tax per box of plastic sandwich bags, etc.?
      –How about a high tax on plastic bottles and containers (for yogurt, margarine, hummus, etc )? We can now recycle the soft milk containers, so could push the public to buy those instead of the big heavy plastic gallon ones.
      –Money from taxes on plastics could go toward more creative alternatives.
      –Giving a refund for reusables such as cloth bags, as Whole Foods does?
      –Can the city come up with places set aside for walking dogs without requiring plastic bags at all? Or perhaps doggy-do composters? Perhaps there could be clean do-composters on the corners of some streets.
      –No one needs giant black plastic garbage bags every week to put out plastic garbage. Use a reusable plastic trash can.

    • Plastic bags are a significant part of Philadelphia’s litter problem. I am particularly concerned about the water pollution caused by Philadelphia litter running off our streets, sidewalks and parking lots during rain events and ending up in the Tacony, Cobbs, Pennypack and Wissahickon Creeks.

      Please visit my blog to see how our plastic bag litter is ending up in Tacony Creek Park at this