Another Plastic Bag Ban Bill Opposed, This Time In Hawaii.


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Reader Vicki sent me a link to the following story from the Honolulu Advertiser, about another city falling prey to industry forces, with politicians afraid of upsetting their big donors:

Bills before the city and state that would ban the use of plastic shopping bags were met with opposition by city administrators and retail industry advocates yesterday, leading lawmakers to defer action on the issue. At a meeting of the Honolulu City Council’s planning and sustainability committee, city Department of Environmental Services Director Eric S. Takamura told council members he sees no litter problem related to plastic bags.

Can you guess who is behind this “opposition”?

Grocery and business groups, including Retail Merchants of Hawai’i and Hawai’i Food Industry Association. And I bet the Grocer’s Union was somehow involved too, just like here in L.A. where they scared the politicians from approving the ban. The saddest (or funniest part, really) of the article is this quote:

“If the bill passes, prices go up, and there is going to be chaos,” Botti said. “They (Mainland retailers) will shut us off. We don’t need it. There are other ways to solve the problem.”

Yes, chaos will ensue if you ban the plastic bag. Just ask San Francisco, or better yet, the entire country of Ireland, about the mad chaos that ensued!

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  1. the ironic thing here is that plastic bags are probably the most re-used forms of garbage there is. Here”™s what the ban on plastic bags means in real life: the average, bill-paying citizen will have to spend more time, money and energy carrying his/her groceries home while big oil companies continue to sell more oil than ever (in the form of gas) at whatever inflated price tickles their fancy. Banning the use of plastic bags is an environmental red-herring. so what”™s worse, throwing away oil in the form of plastic bags, or pouring oil into the atmosphere in the form of car exhaust? if there”™s one thing oil is good for, it”™s for making plastic.

  2. Patrick – that is a weird comparison. What does a plastic bag ban have to do with spending “more time, money and energy carrying his/her groceries home”? And how are these related – “throwing away oil in the form of plastic bags, or pouring oil into the atmosphere in the form of car exhaust”? So if there are no plastic bags, all of a sudden we drive more? That makes zero sense.

    Using canvas or some other reusable bag is free once the bag is paid for, and you can usually get those for free. How that affects gas in our cars is beyond my comprehension. Could you please clarify?

  3. 100% agree with David, using reusable bag is to reduce the use of plastic bags which is made of oil. Imagine how many barrels of oil & how much money we can save by using reusable bag. I don’t know why Botti is always says some stupid things like that ( one of his many stupid statement is ” tie the knot before you toss the plastic bags”

  4. I agree with Patrick in that there is far more to any environmental issue than any given detail you are looking at. It is not enough to simply ban plastic bags… you have to look at other forms of petroleum use, other plastics, gasoline, and Big Oil’s practices. All of these things tie together. But that doesn’t make banning plastic bags a useless move. It just can’t be the only move.

    As far as banning bags in Hawaii, I’m sorely disappointed that the ban didn’t go through. The people quoted in this article make it sound like we have no problem with plastic waste here. But our beaches are clogged with it. An English filmmaker documented our plastic waste problems, went home to England and rallied her town businessowners into a unanimous and voluntary plastic bag ban. All because of the waste they saw here in Hawaii. And consider that 100million ton mass of plastic in the Pacific Ocean. Plastic waste has gotten out of control. We’ve got to check this.

  5. Patrick,
    Are you on drugs or what?

    I know, you’re right and the rest of us are wrong; yep! I had a father like you now he’s dead, thank God

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