James A. Humphrey: Plastic or poop


— In Mike Lawrence's column (Paper or : paper? July 11 Steamboat Today), he raises the question of whether plastic bags should be banned. He quotes City Council President Susan Dellinger, who said reducing the use of plastic bags would be a step forward for Steamboat's environmental efforts. While that may be true, what would replace the plastic bags? No concrete and practical suggestion was offered either in this article or by Susan Dellinger. Paper was suggested, but paper bags in lieu of plastic bags would create just another problem since the making of paper bags would create its own environmental problems, not to speak of the millions of trees needed to make all those paper bags.

Not mentioned in Mike Lawrence's article nor by Susan Dellinger is the wide use of plastic bags by pet owners in Steamboat to pick up their animal droppings to remove what could certainly be hundreds of such droppings every day. If plastic bags were outlawed, I wonder how happy Susan Dellinger would be if instead of picking up discarded plastic bags, she was forced to dodge one animal dropping after another. The city seems to recognize the usefulness of plastic bags. It has already placed containers in each park for said bags to be used by animal lovers for the obvious purpose.

Before our City Council or any other governmental agency goes forward with a ban on plastic bags, let them come up with a real, meaningful alternative for their multiple uses: 1) carrying purchases at Wal-Mart, Safeway and City Market; and 2) being used by pet owners to pick up and dispose of their animal's droppings each and every day of the year.

James A. Humphrey

Steamboat Springs


addlip2U 9 years, 9 months ago

At our house these grocery bags have multiple use and re-use once they get home: to carry varitey of items several times , to pack shoes in, for toys, wet swim suits, for pick up a dog poo and finally the bags life end filled as a daily trash bag. I use and REUSE these plastic grocery bags. Which is much more usage that can be said for those who purchase kitchen plastic bags for their trash.


anote 9 years, 9 months ago

The whole country of Ireland has tackled the plastic bag problem by charging people for their bags at the supermarket. The first result - most people bring their own bags shopping. The environmental result- less plastic bags heading for the landfill. We live in a small town and although you can re-use plastic bags almost everyone I know complains of how many they get at the grocery and the build up of these bags in their kitchens. Personally I always try to bring my own bag to the grocery- you get a discount at safeway! Let's stop the landfill build-up we can do it as a small city if a whole country can!! The poop does need to get picked up but trust me there will still be lots of plastic around and we will not tolerate the poop.


corduroy 9 years, 9 months ago

There are biodegradable doggie bags that can be purchased. They break down much faster than plastic. Spend a little $$ to save my environment? You bet. Once I use up all the stupid plastic bags City Market gave me. Baggers should learn to A. Ask if you want paper or plastic (never been asked myself) and B. pack more things in each bag so they aren't wasted (I've had only 1 thing in each bag before, this is why I prefer to bag my own)


dundalk 9 years, 9 months ago


I too found it interesting about the plastic bag debacle in Ireland. Imagine my shock when after buying a few items, I asked for a bag and they were ready to charge me .25p for the luxury of bagging my groceries.


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