Green Secret of the Week: Reusable Grocery Bags
Seems pretty obvious, right? I mean, why not use a reusable grocery bag instead of the paper and plastic ones that are wreaking havoc on our environment? Besides the fact that they usually cost 99 cents each, I can’t figure out why more people don’t. Anyway, here are 10 reasons that’ll have you shelling out the cash to go reusable, for good:
- The average person uses 350 bags a year
- In NYC alone, if each person used one less bag there would be a 5 million pound reduction in waste heading to the landfills, and $250,000 would in disposal fees would be saved
- Reusable bags save more than 700 regular bags over the span of their lifetime
- Carrying around a reusable bag is a sexy fashion statement. Don’t believe me? Troll around town carting a reusable bag full of stuff under your arm. You might also want to bring a stick with you, to beat away the throngs of admirers that will surely chase after you
- The recipe for making the pulp for paper bags is 1 part pulp mixed to 400 parts water. It doesn’t get much more wasteful than that! Speaking of stats, here’s another one: In 1999 more than 14 million trees were cut down to produce 10 billion paper bags that were used by Americans that year
- A plastic bag takes 450 years to biodegrade. Think about it, the bags you cart your food home in today will still be around in 18 generations. Are those the kind of family heirlooms you want to leave behind?
- When the plastic grocery bags “photo degrade”, they end up in oceans. From there, they float around looking like delicious plankton until fish eat them. Then, fishermen catch the fish, which you buy at a grocery store and then take home in another plastic bag to complete the cycle (ta daaa!). So, think of that the next time your kid tells you that your cooking smells a little funky.
Buying and using reusable bags won’t set you back a lot of cash and it’s a total no-brainer thing to do. It’s probably one of the easiest ways to significantly reduce your carbon footprint over time.