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Plastic Recycling October 09, 2019 02:30:43 PM

Baltimore City Council Committee Votes to Amend Ban on Plastic Bags

Paul Ploumis
ScrapMonster Author
As per the amendment, the threshold for banned bags has now been reduced from 4 mils to 2.25 mils.

Baltimore City Council Committee Votes to Amend Ban on Plastic Bags

SEATTLE (Scrap Monster): The Baltimore City Council judiciary Committee has voted Monday to amend a proposed ban on single-use plastic bags, limiting the ban to only very thin bags. The Committee’s decision received widespread opposition from environmentalists as well as the sponsor of the bill.

As per the amendment, the threshold for banned bags has now been reduced from 4 mils to 2.25 mils. The amendment follows retailers’ plea that 2.25 mils bags are reusable and therefore should not be banned. According to them, the reusability feature of these bags make 2.25 mils threshold the industry standard for plastic bag bans across the nation.

ALSO READ: Baltimore City Council Delays Action on Plastic Bag Ban

 

The changes were approved in a 4-2 vote. Democrat Councilmen Eric Costello, John Bullock, Leon Pinkett and Robert Stokes supported the changes, whereas Republican Councilwomen Mary Pat Clarke and Shannon Sneed voted against the amendment. The opposing members demanded that the bill be either tabled so that members could get more time or vote be delayed until they could thoroughly study on bags of different thicknesses.

Bill Henry, sponsor of the bill the amended language of the bill would let retailers to use plastic bags. The added thickness of permitted bags is inadequate to encourage customers to reuse them. Ultimately, the ban will not have any material impact on plastic bag use in the City. Additional research will be done on the issue, Henry added.

According to industry participants, the amendment has essentially weakened the efforts to implement a meaningful plastic bag ban in the City.

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