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Plastic Bag Ban

stxsailor
April 05, 2017 08:53AM

Registered: 2 years ago
Posts: 461

so did this get delayed or is it just another rule/law that will be ignored and not enforced? All of the stores I've been in are still using them.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

gringojj
April 05, 2017 09:41AM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 338

From what I can see this is how it goes now.....
The stores cannot provide you a bag for free, but they can sell you a bag and then you can put your items in it.

It seems like they have the plastic bags priced at a discouraging 10 cents per bag.

So I guess the idea is that people will not want to pay for the bags and will start bringing their own bags.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

speee1dy
April 05, 2017 10:38AM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 8,442

even though those bags had already been bought and were already in their budget, they are now charging the customer for them. they are not allowed to order any new bags but they are allowed to use up their old bags.

sadly even those bags from Seaside Market that are biodegradable are not allowed to be used.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

fdr
April 05, 2017 10:43AM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 1,170

Yeah, I do wish they would allow biodegradable bags. I understand that part of the point is to keep plastic out of the ocean, of course -- a biodegradable bag is probably just as harmful for a turtle to eat as a non-bio one.

On St John, the grocery stores have switched almost completely to offering paper bags. I say almost because sometimes plastic bags will reappear for a couple of days and then disappear again. I see many people bringing reusable bags. It's been a good change.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Scubadoo
April 05, 2017 12:20PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 1,953

Hawaii has banned the plastic bags, all the many stores I visited used paper bags at no additional charge. Hawaii still allows "reusable" plastic bags. These are the heavier bags like what a higher end department store might use, the ABC liquor stores were using them.
Jan-March were supposed to be transition months for the VI ban I recall with the ban being effective this month.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

sunshinefun
April 05, 2017 02:26PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 589

Quote
gringojj
It seems like they have the plastic bags priced at a discouraging 10 cents per bag.

10 cents a bag is a fair price to not go through the bother of having to bring your own and I'll happily pay it.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

sunshinefun
April 05, 2017 02:39PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 589

Quote
speee1dy
even though those bags had already been bought and were already in their budget, they are now charging the customer for them. they are not allowed to order any new bags but they are allowed to use up their old bags.

The law doesn't say anything about not being allowed to order new bags. Anyone can still buy grocery bags and have them shipped here. The law has several loopholes that are big enough to jump through including definitions of bag type and intended usage. The store owners already knew this from the get go. Plastic bags will be around for sometime to come and with our non-existent enforcement, why would they worry.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Alana33
April 05, 2017 02:46PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 11,769

I'll happily bring my own bags and help reduce the amount of plastic that gets into our environment and waters. Every little bit helps.
My brother in law brings the plastic bags they get from stores up to FL to recycle when they make their stateside trips from STJ.

Personally, I don't see what the difficulty is with having reusable shopping tote bags and using them instead of paying for a plastic bag that doesn't degrade, ends up in our landfills or along the roadsides and is harmful to our turtles and other marine life.

Seriously, how difficult is it to take your own bag to the store, bring it back full, empty it and leave it next to the door to go back in the car?

Stupid to pay 10¢ a bag to continue to destroy the environment.

[www.sciencefocus.com]

Biodegradable plastics take three to six months to decompose fully. That’s much quicker than synthetic counterparts that take several hundred years. Exactly how long a biodegradable bag takes to break down depends on various factors, such as temperature and the amount of moisture present.

But the bags aren’t always as environmentally friendly as they seem. They’re made from similar petrochemical-based materials to conventional plastic, only with compounds added that cause them to disintegrate gradually in the presence of light or oxygen.
They often then degrade into a sludge of toxic chemicals.

Bioplastics made of cornstarch and other plant-based materials are a better bet. They give off CO2 as they decompose, but they’re merely expelling carbon locked in by the plant matter that originally formed them. The net effect on the environment is therefore close to zero.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/05/2017 02:47PM by Alana33.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban
avatar

Exit Zero
April 05, 2017 02:56PM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 2,230

Won't we all now have to buy plastic bags for taking garbage to the dumpsters on the roadside -$$ -- instead of recycling the Pueblo plastic ones??

it would seem like the same amount of plastic bags are going into the landfill?? And the store bought garbage bags are much thicker and larger and would seem to take a lot longer to disintegrate?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/05/2017 02:58PM by Exit Zero.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Alana33
April 05, 2017 03:23PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 11,769

True but how often do you see the big black ones on roadsides or in the ocean?

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

speee1dy
April 05, 2017 03:29PM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 8,442

thats what i heard on da vybe. and that just goes for the plastic


Quote
sunshinefun
Quote
speee1dy
even though those bags had already been bought and were already in their budget, they are now charging the customer for them. they are not allowed to order any new bags but they are allowed to use up their old bags.

The law doesn't say anything about not being allowed to order new bags. Anyone can still buy grocery bags and have them shipped here. The law has several loopholes that are big enough to jump through including definitions of bag type and intended usage. The store owners already knew this from the get go. Plastic bags will be around for sometime to come and with our non-existent enforcement, why would they worry.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

speee1dy
April 05, 2017 03:30PM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 8,442

and those ones they give out all over the place or make you buy , they disintegrate into little plastic bits that never go away.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

AandA2VI
April 05, 2017 08:00PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 2,164

Quote
Alana33
True but how often do you see the big black ones on roadsides or in the ocean?

All the time!

Absolutely disgusted that stores are skirting the law. I'll be reporting anyone I see using any bags.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/05/2017 08:29PM by AandA2VI.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Alana33
April 05, 2017 08:11PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 11,769

Every little bit helps!

[m.facebook.com]

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Scubadoo
April 05, 2017 08:25PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 1,953

No impact on CUL shopping. Have the regular grocery stores started putting their empty boxes out front by the registers like CUL does?

Not a big deal to use the canvas bags but we have to remember to bring them into the store and try to remember to keep them in the truck. And not all shopping is preplanned so it's easy to end up in a store with no canvas bags. Granted in those cases probably do not need more than a bag or two. We find lots of uses of the old bags, never just throwing them out. Now will have to buy something else for the other uses.

Anyone been into Home Depot lately? I'm glad to see those crappy bags go from HD, A lot of stuff with points or edges just tears through the plastic too easily and falls out. I think I had asked them and they said they were going to switch to paper bags.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Alana33
April 05, 2017 08:48PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 11,769

Canvas bags are the best.
Remember to wash whatever bag you're using every now and then.

It took me a little while to get a system going.
As soon as I unloaded groceries, I'd put bags in front of of door so that when I left house I'd grab them, so I'd always have them in vehicle.
Today, in FL, I broke down the collection of boxes I've finally unpacked, that took up half my garage space and put all the paper, plastics, recyclables in separate piles and dragged that and the bin for regular garbage out to the curb where it'll be collected tomorrow. Garbage collection comes twice a week.

I'm rather enjoying not giving my garbage a scenic tour of the island.
And having mail, packages delivered to my home.
People actually come on time or call if running late for appointments!

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Scubadoo
April 05, 2017 09:06PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 1,953

Quote
Alana33


I'm rather enjoying not giving my garbage a scenic tour of the island.
And having mail, packages delivered to my home.

Well I can't complain on STX with condo living. Trash goes in the dumpster that get's emptied by private hauler twice a week (although occasionally at some strange wee hours in the morning) and mail/packages get delivered to my mailbox in the parking lot just outside or to the office.

Contrast that to the mainland where I get to take my trash and recyclables on a scenic tour to the county convenience center and the mailbox is 1000ft from the house.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

stjohnjulie
April 06, 2017 03:44AM

Registered: 10 years ago
Posts: 706

I havne't seen any plastic bags on STJ since April 1st. St. John Market and Dolphin Market ran a promotion around the time this bill passed where if you spent $50 in groceries they would give you one of their reusable bags and overtime you used it and spent $50 or more you would get a 10% discount. Much better incentive to remember to bring it with you to the store. (discount doesn't apply to some items, alcohol, tobacco, prepared food, few other things) I try not to forget the bags, but it happens, and in that case they give me a paper bag for free that immediately ends up in the garbage after I use it. I don't hang on to the paper bags to give the cockroaches any ideas about hanging out in the house.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

East Ender
April 06, 2017 07:27AM

Registered: 13 years ago
Posts: 4,909

I thought that the law allowed "reusable" bags and that the plastic has to be X mils thick? I use my reusable bags to place the trash I pick up off the side of the road, including plastic bags, LOL. I carry my Fruit Bowl bags into the other stores and try to make a point that they could also be advertising...

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

Devlin
April 06, 2017 02:02PM

Registered: 1 year ago
Posts: 7

"I thought that the law allowed "reusable" bags and that the plastic has to be X mils thick?"

That's correct. The plastic bags you see stores charging for meet standards for reuse/recycle that are defined in the law. They cost 3-4x what the flimsy plastic bags did. A grocery store will go through $5-$10k of these bags a week. The choice becomes, offer these bags free, insert thousands of them into the waste stream, and raise prices to cover the added expense (which penalizes everyone, including the person who brings their own bags) or, charge for the bags what they cost with shipping and motivate people to bring their own. The latter is what most retailers are doing stateside, in communities that have passed similar laws. The stores are not making money on those bags, if you include the shipping costs to get them here. They are simply a convenience for shoppers who forget to bring their own. It's not a perfect solution, but it dramatically reduces the number of bags walking out of stores and into the environment, which is the intent of the law and ultimately better for all of us IMO.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

BeachcomberStt
April 08, 2017 03:18PM

Registered: 7 years ago
Posts: 1,014

Quote
Exit Zero
Won't we all now have to buy plastic bags for taking garbage to the dumpsters on the roadside -$$ -- instead of recycling the Pueblo plastic ones??

it would seem like the same amount of plastic bags are going into the landfill?? And the store bought garbage bags are much thicker and larger and would seem to take a lot longer to disintegrate?

I recycled ALL STORES that used plastic bags for throwing out my garbage and picking up garbage on the beach, etc.
While shopping, I also use the reusable cold bags for my cold food & sometimes the reusable bags.

Now I have to buy -$$- thicker, larger garbage bags at the store, as Exit Zero explained.

Now I'm not going to have extra bags to pick up garbage because I'm paying $$ to buy plastic bags. I have a budget.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

AandA2VI
April 09, 2017 12:52PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 2,164

^ what? confused smiley

Yea... you're right; F the planet because you have a budget.

I. Can't. Even.

Pretty simple - DONT USE PLASTIC BAGS. Using it a second time is not truly recycling. It still ends up for 200 years in the dump. Isn't ours... like.... full?

For picking up trash at the beach we always have a Home Depot bucket in both or cars and I use a mesh fabric one for picking up all the trash in the ocean on dives.

I will tell you I'm on a personal mission to report stores using bags. I wonder if starting an online petition to Kmart for removing those "paid" thicker bags need to happen too. This ban has to be ANY plastic grocery bag not selective or else it's defeating the point. Most of you know how much I dive and its WAY worse under there than you think!!!! The pier is downright DISGUSTING - trash everywhere. I come up with at least 10lbs every dive and some days three times as much. It's NOT fun lugging that out of the water either!

Ps. People - PLEASE stop taking off your underwear at the beach. I pull a pair out pretty much every dive out west. So gross.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/09/2017 12:56PM by AandA2VI.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

BeachcomberStt
April 09, 2017 02:50PM

Registered: 7 years ago
Posts: 1,014

Are you going to start petitioning the whole government of the United States, not just USVI to stop using and selling store bought plastic bags? Stop selling plastic bags in Kmart, Wal-Mart, and other chain stores?

Not going to happen.

I'll bring plastic bags from the states to recycle in my household and pickup outside garbage. Nobody can stop me.

Not f the environment.
I don't see a problem with store plastic bags. My family always recycled them for other important secondary purposes, such as household, automobile, and pet waste, etc., since I was a child. So I know I'm doing my part and so is my family and friends on island and the states.

Buying bags at the store isn't going to solve the problem, whether you buy them at checkout or from the store shelves.

I will use as much cardboard boxes as possible from Cost-U-Less and PriceSmart and reuse them when possible.

I'm not a tree hugger and I won't apologize for that. I believe and stand behind other problems affecting the USVI, US, and the world. Plastic bags is not on the top of my list. I still have a budget.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

islandjoan
April 09, 2017 03:15PM

Registered: 11 years ago
Posts: 1,488

In my opinion the only thing suitable for discarding used cat litter is a plastic bag. Don't know what I would use without them. Flushing it is not an option in our condo complex, which has old, easily clogged plumbing from the units down to the main plumbing.

Re: Plastic Bag Ban

BeachcomberStt
April 09, 2017 04:15PM

Registered: 7 years ago
Posts: 1,014

I'm in the states now taking care of an elderly family member that has cancer for the fourth time. Cancer research for people is more important to me than plastic bags.

Next time I go shopping I will make sure I grab as many plastic bags as I can, plus paper bags for recycling paper, which btw they have an excellent recycling program in this town, but we still use free store plastic bags for house waste before we put it in the large 30 gallon plastic bags bought at Sam's Club that all go to dump. Curbside pickup too wink

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