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Just in the past couple of weeks, some of those in Bethel got appalled at the number of plastic grocery bags they have trapped in the bushes around the city dump [ Massive trashy tundra clean up effort planned]

Beautiful Bethel beaches Beautiful Bethel beaches (Sadowski & Froehlich) is the same city that refused to ban the little fly-by-nights a couple of years ago because a few folks ordering delivery lunch wanted them. This is the same public works that ordered new dumpsters that are too tall for folks to use, especially children. This is the same landfill, adjacent to the giant septic pond unlined sewage lagoon, which for years did not use daily cover; the same dump/pond which feeds the gulls and the ravens all year round.

see related entries–

China targets plastic bags http://link.latimes.com/r/0Q7X8Z/A75RX/S1MZ9L/6245/NPR1J/LE/h
By Mark Magnier
A ban on the thinnest goes into effect in June. Some wonder how effective it will be.

Earth Matters: Bags don’t have to be ubiquitous
Mona Blaber | The New Mexican1/25/2008 – 1/26/08

Last summer, I decided to go bag-neutral. Armed with a mountain of sacks from previous purchases, I vowed never to take another bag.

It went well until I actually bought something. I walked into a salon intending to buy just a brush and walked out with a brush, two jumbo bottles of shampoo and conditioner and one plastic bag. Before the day was out, I slipped up again, forgetting until it was too late that a Subway sandwich means a plastic bag unless you speak up.

Plastic bags are convenient and difficult to avoid; conservation groups estimate that between 80 billion and 100 billion are given to consumers every year in the United States. Those 100 billion bags require about 12 million barrels of oil to manufacture and take up to 1,000 years to break down. Standard plastic bags don’t biodegrade. They photodegrade, … Even when properly disposed of, the sacks can fly away and sully the landscape. In South Africa, where they’re now banned, they’re so ubiquitous as litter they’re called the national flower…

The industry also argues that plastic bags are more environmentally friendly than paper, because paper uses trees and requires more energy in manufacture and transport, which is true, according to a study by the Institute for Lifecycle Environmental Assessment. That’s the point: If we use our own bags, we don’t need either. Paper and plastic both use precious resources and energy, contributing to carbon emissions and climate change. […]


Old shipping crates reborn as Taloyoak garbage bins
Last Updated: Friday, January 25, 2008 CBC News

A Nunavut community has found an innovative use for discarded wooden crates from barge shipments: make them into badly needed garbage bins for residents… Covers on the new bins prevent ravens and dogs from getting into people’s garbage, a major problem… […]


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