U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Green Living
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 10-02-2014, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Bran's tree
10,983 posts, read 4,834,099 times
Reputation: 12363

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by OpenD View Post
It's dangerous trying to compare totally different cultures, especially when you don't have a full picture. I mean really, how do you explain 200 different flavors of Twix candy bars, including horseradish and giant clam? While it is true that there is less littering in Japan, there is also a much more highly structured system of mandatory recycling. I read an article and saw photos of someone at a recycling point in their neighborhood which had 17 different bins for different categories, with stern admonitions to put everything in the correct bin!



Pennies, literally pennies. Not enough to be a real issue for anybody, but just like the 5 cents refundable deposit on soda cans here in Hawai'i have a powerful effect on reducing cans as a source of litter here, the few cents that might be charged for a paper bag encourages people to bring reusable bags.

All in all, it is a very inexpensive way to modify the behavior of the public.
Honestly, I don't really mind fees being charged for bags. But they're selling paper bags for 10 cents (fair enough)...but outright banning plastic bags, everywhere - even for takeout and large store bags for clothes and other retail.

(ahem... I rely completely on public transportation, navigate crowds and jampacked buses/trains every day. It ain't fun to splurge on clothes, only for the bag to randomly split open, and have all my new clothes tumble out onto the crowded street downtown with cigarette butts and a freshly hocked loogie on it, and inevitably gets stepped on as I scramble to pick my stuff up off the ground. This has happened 3 times with paper bags....I may just be a klutz, but it never happened with plastic bags. So it'd be nice to have a choice. I have no problem paying a little more for plastic bags.)

/rant

That's what bugs me a little more -- the outright ban of plastic bags.

As for Japan, they simply prove that society CAN be taught to dispose of things responsibly. Twix aside, I don't see why Americans can't learn to become a little more civilized. It'll take time for sure, so why not charge 10c per paper bag, 25c for plastic, and use the revenue to implement Japan's system. Boom. Three birds with one stone.

Last edited by ohhwanderlust; 10-02-2014 at 11:43 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-02-2014, 04:58 PM
 
7,281 posts, read 8,848,730 times
Reputation: 11419
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohhwanderlust View Post
Honestly, I don't really mind fees being charged for bags. But they're selling paper bags for 10 cents (fair enough)...but outright banning plastic bags, everywhere - even for takeout and large store bags for clothes and other retail.

SNIP

That's what bugs me a little more -- the outright ban of plastic bags.

As for Japan, they simply prove that society CAN be taught to dispose of things responsibly. Twix aside, I don't see why Americans can't learn to become a little more civilized. It'll take time for sure, so why not charge 10c per paper bag, 25c for plastic, and use the revenue to implement Japan's system. Boom. Three birds with one stone.
How do you feel about being charged the 10 cents when you weren't being charged before? Multiply it out. Someone is making a use sum of money off this and it isn't you or me.

It's only a few cents. That is how every tax got started. A few pennies can't hurt.

Think about this:

You were paying the 10 cents already. It was built into the price of goods being sold. Now you're going to pay another ten cents.

That is 20 cents.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-02-2014, 05:28 PM
 
Location: I am right here.
4,914 posts, read 4,045,543 times
Reputation: 15540
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohhwanderlust View Post

That's what bugs me a little more -- the outright ban of plastic bags.

..... so why not charge 10c per paper bag, 25c for plastic, and use the revenue to implement Japan's system. Boom. Three birds with one stone.
Or buy your own plastic bags in bulk?

1000 bags for $14. That's less than 2 per bag.

If they ever ban plastic bags where I live, that is what I will be buying.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-02-2014, 05:54 PM
 
Location: Bran's tree
10,983 posts, read 4,834,099 times
Reputation: 12363
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeachSalsa View Post
Or buy your own plastic bags in bulk?

1000 bags for $14. That's less than 2 per bag.

If they ever ban plastic bags where I live, that is what I will be buying.
Good idea. I might just do that. Hopefully they're not banned from delivering that here.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-02-2014, 07:28 PM
MJ7
 
6,221 posts, read 8,617,227 times
Reputation: 6514
Personally, I avoid plastic anything, from ziplock bags and garbage bags to plastic shopping bags, certainly almost always. I opt to carry things in my hands if I do not have a lot of items, or I simply bring a tote. Do I care that I don't get a plastic bag that the store charges me for? Hell no.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2014, 02:05 AM
 
Location: Canada
5,721 posts, read 4,141,506 times
Reputation: 15357
To me, the issue isn't about the money that stores make for adding on the price of a bag, it's about helping the environment. Face it people, the price of groceries (or anything else for that matter) is never going to go down, no matter what they charge or don't charge for bags.

Honestly, I don't agree to a total ban on plastic bags because on rare occasion for certain articles purchased, I want a plastic bag to keep them clean but I also don't mind paying for those bags. I know I will use those bags at home for something else.

If they charge .25 in grocery stores per bag, instead of .2 or .5, maybe that would convince people to either recycle the bags they have instead of thowing them into the garbage after each shopping trip, or start using reusable.

I love my reusable bags. They are strong and much easier on the hands to carry than plastic bag handles when carrying heavy articles (juice cans, produce, etc). Every other week, I wash them in hot soapy water in my laundry tubs by hand and hang them to dry. Sure, it's a slight inconvenience of 10 minutes of my time every two weeks, but I know that I'm helping in my own small way to keep plastic out of landfill sites.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-03-2014, 12:27 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,615 posts, read 54,202,543 times
Reputation: 30851
Quote:
Originally Posted by gouligann View Post
To me, the issue isn't about the money that stores make for adding on the price of a bag, it's about helping the environment. Face it people, the price of groceries (or anything else for that matter) is never going to go down, no matter what they charge or don't charge for bags.

Honestly, I don't agree to a total ban on plastic bags because on rare occasion for certain articles purchased, I want a plastic bag to keep them clean but I also don't mind paying for those bags. I know I will use those bags at home for something else.

If they charge .25 in grocery stores per bag, instead of .2 or .5, maybe that would convince people to either recycle the bags they have instead of throwing them into the garbage after each shopping trip, or start using reusable.

I love my reusable bags. They are strong and much easier on the hands to carry than plastic bag handles when carrying heavy articles (juice cans, produce, etc). Every other week, I wash them in hot soapy water in my laundry tubs by hand and hang them to dry. Sure, it's a slight inconvenience of 10 minutes of my time every two weeks, but I know that I'm helping in my own small way to keep plastic out of landfill sites.
I doubt that $0.25/bag would make much difference. What you consider a "slight inconvenience" is major for many people who are either lazy or consider themselves "too busy" to bother with such things, and with the paper bags sold now (for $0.05 here) they may only need 1-2 and it could be worth a dollar each to them. We always keep some reusable bags in all 3 cars but sometimes forget to bring them in and end up with plastic since only one nearby city has banned them. It's hard to break 30-40 year old habits.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-04-2014, 07:21 AM
 
Location: DC
6,512 posts, read 6,438,531 times
Reputation: 3114
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hemlock140 View Post
I doubt that $0.25/bag would make much difference. What you consider a "slight inconvenience" is major for many people who are either lazy or consider themselves "too busy" to bother with such things, and with the paper bags sold now (for $0.05 here) they may only need 1-2 and it could be worth a dollar each to them. We always keep some reusable bags in all 3 cars but sometimes forget to bring them in and end up with plastic since only one nearby city has banned them. It's hard to break 30-40 year old habits.
We find a bag tax to be very effective:


The Case of the Bag Tax
Observing 16,251 shoppers at 16 grocery stores in Washington, D.C., neighboring Montgomery County, Md., and northern Virginia and data from grocery store scanners, she found that a 5-cent tax on disposable bags substantially decreased disposable bag use while a 5-cent bonus for using a reusable bag did not.

Before the tax, several stores offered a 5-cent bonus to shoppers who brought their own bags. In stores that offered no incentive, 84% of shoppers took at least one throwaway bag per shopping trip; in stores that offered the nickel lure, 82% did.

In contrast, some 82% of Montgomery County shoppers used at least one disposable bag per shopping trip before the bag tax was imposed; 40% did afterward. (Meanwhile, a survey by the D.C. government finds that only 16% of residents and 8% of businesses polled oppose the four-year-old bag tax law. )

Small incentives can lead to big changes in behavior if they are designed well, she concludes. Starbucks, she suggests, would have more success at reducing the use of paper cups if it abandoned its 10-cent discount for those who bring their own cup in favor of cutting the price of coffee by 10 cents and charging 10 cents extra for a paper cup.
Why a Bag Tax Works Better Than a Reusable Bag Bonus | Brookings Institution
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-04-2014, 01:23 PM
 
Location: Portlandia "burbs"
10,236 posts, read 13,959,745 times
Reputation: 25884
I was on vacation recently, at the California coast, and many stores I patroned offered to "sell" a bag for .25. In one store I decided I needed one, so I went ahead and purchased it. It was a common paper bag.

I decided to keep the bag as a joke about it being made of gold.

'Not impressed with the plastic ban, Period.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-04-2014, 03:11 PM
 
7,281 posts, read 8,848,730 times
Reputation: 11419
Tax credits are an incentive, taxes are not. Taxes incentives when used to modify behavior, it is a penalty or punishment. The difference isn't merely semantics because there is a direct correlation in how people think about things once they believe a tax is an incentive.

A "fee" likewise is a penalty or punishment if it is used to change behavior. A fee can be revenue recovery IF a previously paid for service or good are now being provided for as additional goods or services offset by the lowering of prices.

An incentive implies that one gets something in return for doing something or behaving in a certain way and is it disingenuous to suggest they are getting anything in this case.

There is an incentive in this issue though, it is for the stores and those put in charge of managing the "incentive" processes.

Before anyone squawks about the environment and the effect of plastic bags, note: I don't use plastic bags when I go to the grocery store, often I just ask the items to be put back into the cart and I take them to the car where they are placed in a cardboard box or boxes and then unloaded at home. When the boxes are no longer suitable for that task, they are used to provide a base for mulch in the yard. There is no plastic to start or end with, unlike those who claim that a recyclable plastic bag they use over and over is somehow doing the environment a favor. The cardboard box doesn't get washed and therefore uses no water and no detergent.

The strangest thing I observed though was the first time I tired to use a self check out at one of the largest grocery chain stores. It was impossible to check out unless I either bought a bag or said I had my own. I tried to say I would use my own but the stores now have very sophisticated scales upon which you place your purchased items. It can detect that you did not put a bag on the scale in which you place your items. There was no override. The store's solution was to give me a bag so that the system would allow me to check out. The next time I went to a regular staffed checkout. Same thing. When I asked that the items be put back into the cart, the system would not allow the checker to proceed because the options were only to buy a bag or claim I had brought one. The checker, trying their best to get around this colossal mindmeld of stupidity, entered that I brought a back with me.

Guess what?

Yes, the system stopped processing and informed the clerk that I had not brought sufficient numbers of bags to hold the contents. I was amazed. The solution? Enter that I bought several bags and then refund the money at customer service.

This is the failure to think through even the simplest of processes because the entire process is designed not to do anything but obtain revenue.

The environment? There is no concern for the environment when it comes to bans like this.

In what mind does eliminating the provided bag (of any type) without reducing the cost of goods to the customer yet charging them for a bag if they have none equal an incentive?

It is not an incentive, it is a punishment or penalty.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Green Living
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:11 AM.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top