(San Rafael, CA) – Today Marin County Board of Supervisors overcame the plastic industry's opposition with a unanimous vote to ban single-use bags from Marin County.
“Marin County is all too familiar with the negative effects of plastic pollution,” said Julia Ritchie, Oceans Associate for Environment California. “We know that plastic shopping bags constitute a major part of our urban waste stream. They cost local government millions of dollars in clean up and disposal expenses. They foul the environment and endanger marine wildlife. This ban is a crucial first step in solving the problem, and I’m very proud to support it,” said Ritchie.
Last year the American Chemistry Council killed AB1998, a bill to ban plastic bags; then California’s municipalities took charge. Long Beach, Los Angeles County, and San Jose all stood up to say NO to waste. Today, Marin County joins 23 other cities and counties in California knitting the patchwork quilt of bag bans.
Plastic pollution is becoming an increasing threat to marine life. 267 species are negatively affected by plastic every year. Every year in California, we use 19 billion plastic bags; the Guinness Book of World Records name the plastic bags the most ubiquitous consumer product in 2009. The North Pacific Gyre, 1,000 miles off the coast of California, is the convergence point for what has become swirling plastic soup leaking into our eco-systems and food sources.
“I am pleased to join Environment California and the numerous other environmental and community organizations that have long urged for progressive and sustainable reform on this issue,” said Marin County Board of Supervisor Charles McGlashan.
Already three other counties or cities, like San Rafael, Sunnyvale, and Santa Monica have move forward in passing ordinances on bags. Thank you Marin for adding to the momentum rush for bag bans!