EcoTrack 11: Using cloth shopping bags will decrease pollution

Reported by Chris Vickers email | bio
Posted by Kate Oatis email

TOLEDO (WTOL) - The City of Toledo is considering establishing an advanced recovery fee to reduce the use of disposable shopping bags, which are a source of pollution in our environment and a problem for the city.

"If we can reduce the number of bags coming to the landfill, we'll reduce the efforts we have to take to control those bags from leaving the actual waste disposal areas," said Casey Stevens with Hoffman Road Landfill.

Even at the landfill, plastic bags blowing in the wind pose a hazard and must be picked up on almost a daily basis.

"Unfortunately, it does cost the city time and money and one of the goals of the recovery fee is to try and lessen the number of bags so we won't have to have that expense to collect up that litter that blows from the landfill," Stevens explained.

Plastic bags also litter our streets and waterways. Each year, "citizens of the Toledo area basically use about 100 million plastic bags a year."

The green fee is meant to encourage people to choose other alternatives, such as reuseable cloth bags. This would reduce the amount of trash and litter caused by plastic bags.

"Most of those end up in the Hoffman Road Landfill, but several of them you'll see blowing around your neighborhoods," Stevens said.