Monday, June 20, 2016

What will you do if there are no more plastic grocery bags?

The threat of making them illegal has been around for years. I first wrote about it well over 10 years ago. Nothing happened then and nothing happened the next time I heard about it. It's back again. I won't say nothing will happen, because someone keeps trying.

What will you do if there are no more plastic bags? They've become such a part of my household that I would hate to do without! I understand the ecological concern, but I am not on board with it. If they outlaw free plastic bags, we will just have to buy the non free kind. How does that help?

Right now, those freebies can be used in multiple ways; some I won't even try to go into here. Here are some ways I do use them, though, and I'm sure some of you have different uses for them. If so, tell us about it!

  • Kitchen and bathroom trash can liners
  • Containers for yarn, clothing and odds and ends
  • Containers for wet clothing
  • To hold pulled weeds and other small yard waste for the trash
  • Trash holder in the car, especially for long trips

Other ways that I have tried or not, but don't do now:

  • Making plarn (plastic "yarn") to knit or crochet with
  • Make plastic rope
  • Iron together for a piece of sturdier plastic
  • Slip your hand inside one to pick up nasty stuff
  • Kneeling pads if you need to change a tire or work in the garden

And so on and so on. What will we do if there are no more plastic bags?


  1. Okay, so I know that this post is from June so this comment is not timely, but California just voted to ban plastic bags last week, and the ban takes effect in January. I voted no, but for different reasons (it seemed like a tax on poor people and single mothers, who either ride the bus to work and the grocery store and don't have a trunk in which to keep reusable bags, or who are so busy that they just don't have time to keep track of them). It passed, though, so here we go.

    To address the list:
    -I just don't use liners in small trash cans. Anything gross/wet goes in the kitchen trash that has a large trash bag. Bathroom trash gets emptied into kitchen trash before it gets taken out.
    -Reusable bags work just as well, are more durable, and are prettier. We can still get paper bags too.
    -I am going to make my own reusable/washable wet bag for this purpose (mostly to take to the beach)
    -Again, paper bags work, or just use a small trashcan without a liner or a bucket and dump it into the big trashcan when done.
    -A resusable bag works just fine and is more durable. Just empty into gas station trash cans.

    As for a couple of the other points:
    -I only use rags, no paper towels or wipes. I keep socks that I can no longer repair in a separate bin and use those when there is anything particularly gross I have to pick up so I can throw the whole thing away.
    -Plastic bags don't cushion well, so a regular gardening kneeling pad would work better if you need that. If it's just to keep dirt/oil from getting on you, paper bags would work just as well, or newspaper.

    So I think we'll do just fine if we don't have plastic bags. I do wish, though, that stores didn't have to charge for paper bags, for those bus riders and harried single moms. :)

  2. You can also upcycle pillowcases into bags or take a sheet and sew some. I wish FL would ban those plastic bags even though I use them for a few household things. Too many people are lazy and toss them into the trash instead of recycling, and all grocery stores here have recycling depositories for them.