Coastal communities are ideal locations for single-use plastic bag bans as plastic pollution in the ocean is especially hard to address. As you read this, there is a growing mass of plastic trash circulating around the Pacific Gyre in the Pacific Ocean that is twice the size of Texas and growing! Since plastic does not biodegrade it remains in the ocean for hundreds of years where it breaks down into tiny particles that resemble plankton. Fish and other marine life mistake “plastic plankton” for food and thus, plastic enters our food web.
Day Without a Bag is an effort to stop the stream of plastic bags migrating to the Pacific Ocean and is part of a larger County-wide effort to move towards a single-use plastic bag ban ordinance for 2012. Humboldt Waste Management Authority has begun to investigate a countywide ordinance with guidance from the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors, and support from the City of Arcata and many individuals and organizations around the county. Petitions supporting the bag ban ordinance will be circulated at the four tabling locations the day of the event. Humboldt County has the opportunity to join cities and counties across California in banning single-use plastic bags, as well as countries including Germany, South Africa, Italy, Australia, India, Japan, Turkey and more!
You have to know by now that the ugly consequences of single-use plastics far outweighs any momentary convenience. Humboldt Baykeeper and Humboldt Surfrider are offering grocery store customers the chance to do better by the ocean this Thursday.