by Brenna Timm

 

Plastic bags are something that we use day-to-day with little thought. They are convenient for whenever you are shopping so you can carry your purchases with ease. However, plastic bags may soon be costing you more than they are worth. Colorado and various cities within have discussed and are considering putting a ban or restrictions on the plastic bags we use. If this passes in a place that you live and shop, you could have to start paying for the plastic bags you use. So what is the deal? That is what we are discussing today.

plastic bag

The Precedent

Colorado is not the first place to be considering a ban on plastic or having customers pay for each bag. Counties in Europe established years ago for plastic bags to add a small price with every bag you use. In part, this encourages shoppers to use reusable bags and be conscious of their shopping. States like California, Hawaii, and New York have considered and passed laws regarding plastic bags. In these instances, 5-10 cents are added to the total cost for every plastic bag used. Certain cities in Colorado have passed a ban on plastic bags. In Boulder, Colorado plastic bags are banned and come with a fee, just like in other states.

So, What about it?

Denver is one of the cities that was contemplating whether or not to enforce a ban and include fees. It was recently decided that yes, Denver will. July 1st, 2020, shoppers can expect to pay ten cents for every plastic or paper bag they use. The hope is to decrease the number of plastic bags that become part of the environmental problem that are littering our rivers. When Boulder implemented this law, they saw a 70% reduction in bag use. The intention is for a similar thing to happen with Denver.

This ban has not passed in Fort Collins, but that does not mean we won’t be affected or that things won’t change. Now might be the best time to start making some changes before we have to pay for it. We can purchase or make reusable bags. We can begin to practice remembering to use them. Every little thing is a step towards a greener future.