Not bringing your own, reusable bags to the market?  Here are 10 reasons why you should!

1) A plastic shopping bag can take anywhere from 15 to 1000 years to decompose. In a compressed landfill, deprived of atmosphere to help them biodegrade, paper bags don’t fare much better.

2) Plastic bags don’t biodegrade, but are at risk for photo degradation, light exposure dissolving them into toxic polymer particles. Most often, when this happens, it happens in the ocean.

3) The cost to recycle plastic bags so outweighs their value that most recycling facilities will not take them, leading more and more to just be thrown out with the rest of the trash.RRR

4) According to the Wall Street Journal, only 1% of plastic bags are recycled world-wide; the rest are left to live on indefinitely in landfills.

5) The United States alone uses approximately 100 billion new plastic bags per year – the average person goes through between 350 and 500.

6) Thanks to their light weight, plastic bags are the debris most likely to fly away from landfills, settling instead in trees, storm drains, beaches, and the ocean.

7) Public agencies in California alone spend over $300 million on coastal litter clean-up per year.

8) Plastic bags make up over 10% of washed-up debris polluting the US coastline.

9) According to the British Antarctic Survey, discarded plastic bags have been found as far north as the Arctic Circle and as far south as The Falkland Islands.

10) An estimated one million birds and 100,000 turtles and other sea animals die of starvation each year after ingesting discarded plastic bags which block their digestive tracks.

If those reasons don’t convince you, save your favorite vendors the expense of purchasing bags, which means those savings will be passed down to you!  🙂



Reuse This Bag. (2010). 25 Reasons to use Reusable Bags. Retrieved from

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