While doing my weekly shopping on Sunday, I was trying to imagine the world without plastic bags, and trying to remember what we did when I was a kid. For example, when shopping in the fresh meat section, some of the packages were a little bit leaky so I grabbed a clear plastic produce bag to wrap around them and keep the rest of my groceries safe... and I wondered what I would do if my City goes ahead with banning single-use plastic bags. Yes I could bring some from home but eventually I will run out, if I can't supplant my supplies with new 'single use bags' anymore.
So my mind wandered back to the Old Days, trying to remember how meat used to be packaged and sure enough, I remembered it was the evil PAPER. The pinky-brown butcher's paper (Kraft paper) surrounded all of our packs of meat when I was a kid. Are we supposed to go back to that? I thought we were supposed to Save The Trees?
I am confused.
Even if we bring our own recycled-material bags, we have come to rely on plastic for so many other things - is banning bags going to make much difference? I'm sure it would make a big dent, but when your recycled bags are full of plastic containers, meat packs wrapped in styrofoam and plastic, etc - how does that REALLY help? Not to mention the fact that ALL of the recycled bags I have in my closet are MADE IN CHINA, so I'd like to know how environmentally friendly they are, knowing that they had to be shipped here across an ocean just like my plastic bags lol. But I digress --- it also reminded me of one day shortly after Christmas 2009 when my local Zellers store completely ran out of plastic bags. They said I could buy their recycled bags for a lower price of $1.79 each, but I already have a bunch so I just shoved everything into the bottom of my son's stroller lol.... I had not planned on shopping but while out and about at the bank, I ran across a good sale. But I thought ahead to a bag-banning and how many people would be shelling out money for these supposedly 'environmentally friendlier' bags and shuddered.
So instead of using plastic, we can go back to PAPER, or the bags that are made in factories belching out fumes and using fossil fuels and then shipped over oceans using up even more fuel, sewn together on machines that use electricity, fuel, etc - and this is supposed to be better? Is it really? Save plastic - Kill A Tree!
For fun, here is a link to how Kraft paper was made before, although I'm sure someone will come up with a supposedly enviro-friendly way to make them instead. Why do I feel like singing about Lemmings?