DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A proposal to ban plastic bags in the city will be considered by Dallas City Council in the next few months.
Today, at a Quality of Life Committee meeting council members discussed what the proposal could entail.
The ordinance would prohibit stores from handing out single use carry out bags.
The proposal was led by council member Dwaine Caraway, who said the millions of plastic end up as litter and pollute the environment.
”They land in our trees, in our fences, in our lakes and they are bad for environment,” he said.
Caraway stressed he didn’t want taxpayers to have to pay a cent for reusable bags and proposed grocery stores and product manufacturers should pay for and/or sponsor reusable bags that could be handed out to consumers.
But not everyone was on board with that idea, including Gary Huddleston, director of consumer affairs for Kroger.
“That cost probably goes someplace else. That cost probably goes in the product,” Huddleston said. “Frankly, if there is a bag ban that would save us money so we’re not buying plastic bags but we don’t think that’s good for the customers. We think the customer should again have a choice.”
Huddleston says Kroger encourages customers to use reusable bags and even has reminders in the parking lot. Customers can also recycle their old grocery bags at Kroger stores.
More than 2 million pounds of plastic from DFW alone was recycled through that program, Huddleston said.
Many grocery stores still give customers the option to choose paper or plastic or use their bags.
Even though it hasn’t been passed as an ordinance, many North Texans are already shunning plastic bags on their own.
”I bring my own basket actually to try to avoid to use too many bags,” said one customer who did not want her name used.
A similar ordinance was passed in Austin and environmentalists says its already working.
”They are already seeing a dramatic decrease in bags caught in streams rivers, creeks. The city’s litter crews that go out collecting litter are already seeing huge reductions in the problem,” said Zach Trahan, Program Director for Texas Campaign for the Environment.
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