No More Plastic Bags Anywhere In Hawaii

Quite a few municipalities have managed to ban the practice of giving out non-biodegradeable plastic bags at checkout, including three of Hawaii’s four counties. Last month, the Honolulu County Council passed its own ban, making Hawaii the first state where single-use plastic bags in stores are verboten.

It’s important to note that this isn’t a statewide ban, like California tried and failed a few years ago. It just means that each county has passed its own separate ban.

There are some useful exceptions, including: dry-cleaning bags, bags for live fish, door-hanger bags, prescription drug bags, and (thank goodness) dog waste bags. Retailers have until 2015 to comply and get rid of their existing bag stocks.

Should Plastic Shopping Bags Be Banned?

Plastic Bags Banned on All Hawaiian Islands [Plastic Bag Ban Report]

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  1. Gertie says:

    Who says plastic bags are “single use?” That is ridiculous. We have a diaper disposal system called Diaper Champ that calls for grocery-sized plastic bags. We use plastic sacks to line trash cans, store craft supplies, to hold wet swimsuits, for dirty clothes when we travel. There are countless uses. To call them single-use is ridiculous. There are recycling programs for the bags as well.

    All bags can be reusable if you’re thoughtful.

    • homehome says:

      That’s the thing, most ppl aren’t thoughtful. I live in Montgomery County in Maryland right now. Before they charged for it, plastic bags were every where littered on the ground. After they passed the ban, I rarely see that now. Now most ppl bring their own bags to stores and shop.

    • bennilynn says:

      If you need small plastic bags for things, nobody’s preventing you from buying them. They’re just not being subsidized publicly anymore. Those”free” grocery bags are anything but. The cost is hidden, rolled into the products you buy and the cost to the city to clean them up and haul them away.

      These thin, disposable grocery sacks are a relativity new phenomenon. People survived without them. The switch back is going to be annoying at first, but in the long run, it’s going to need to happen anyway.

      • George4478 says:

        Since the hidden cost is going away, do you think stores will not be lowering costs accordingly? The city lowering taxes due to the reduced clean-up costs? I don’t. You will still be paying for the plastic bag; you just don’t get one now.

        • msbask says:

          +1

        • longfeltwant says:

          Are you sure about that? Really really sure? So sure that you are ignoring the many grocery stores which today give a discount to consumers who eschew store bags in favor of bringing their own bags?

          Anyway, the cost of the bags isn’t really significant. It’s a tiny cost. This isn’t about the cost. The tiny cost savings from the bags will simply get lost in the slow creep of grocery prices. Eventually, yes, price competition will squeeze out that margin, but you won’t notice.

          • Kate says:

            I will notice the huge price tag on the city when it’s going broke to handle that much more garbage and to constantly clean it up over and over as it blows around.

    • Debbie says:

      “Diaper disposal system” has the marketing department written all over it. You have a right to use disposable diapers, but please don’t pretend you’re reducing waste by wrapping each one in a plastic bag. The diapers still end up in a landfill.

  2. CommonSense(ಠ_ಠ) says:

    This is a good thing as humans are slobs.
    You see litter everywhere. (cigarette smokers are the worst)
    I cant possible understand why people litter. I have never had the urge to just throw trash wherever. I wish fines for littering were a lot worse and they enforced litter laws like they do with DUI tasks forces.
    As soon as people started getting $10K fines and weeks of picking up trash on the side of the road this country will magically get cleaner overnight.

    • MathMan aka Random Talker says:

      That’s an interesting point you make about cigarettes.

      If Person A smokes a cigarette directly in front of a police officer or group of people and then snubs it on the ground in front of them, probably nothing will happen.

      Person B unwraps a small piece of candy directly in front of a police officer or group of people and then tosses it on the ground in front of them. My gut tells me it is more likely someone will say/do something in Person B’s case vs Person A’s. However, logic tells me these two acts are no different.

      Things that make you go….

    • longfeltwant says:

      Yeah, we could go the draconian route, but I prefer economic incentives when they work. Similar to deposits on bottles and cans, I would like to see a deposit on cig butts. Twenty-five cents per butt would be enough to get homeless people to pick them up to get the deposit, and maybe enough for some smokers to do so, too.

      Also, we nonsmokers should stop being so snotty about it, and help the smokers by providing cig bins. We have them many places, and we should have them in many more. (And they have helped the problem.) Part of the problem is that high-horse nonsmokers see smoking as a moral failure, and just want to make smokers feel bad and oppress them. Give up the snottiness and focus on the actual problem, which is the butts, not the smoking.

      • BeamMeUp says:

        I watched yesterday as a smoker threw his butt on the ground, less than 3 feet from one of those cig butt cans just outside a store Just plain lazy.

        And what about those smokers who throw their butts out the window of their moving cars? Last time I checked every one of those cars had a built in ashtray!

        • Sound Money Girl says:

          Actually, my car doesn’t have an ashtray. It still has a lighter, but the ashtray was replaced with storage space. The ashtray was optional and I didn’t opt for it.

        • SilentAgenger says:

          Sometimes when I’m sitting at a stop light at pretty much any busy intersection, I pass the time by counting the cigarette butts that have collected alongside the curb (I just determine the rough amount of space that 10 butts occupy and the multiply that space for as far as I can see them clustered together)…it’s fairly common for me to count several hundred by the time the light turns green. :~(

          And for cars without ashtrays, there are several types of metal/glass containers that will substitute…heck, even actual ashtrays for the home come in all shapes and sizes that will somehow/somewhere fit in a car (if nothing else, use an empty soup can in the cup holder…open it with a safety can opener so you can use the lid to cap it when not in use).

  3. Cat says:

    I understand the plastic bag problem – I’ve been in third – world countries and seen huge tracts of land littered with so many discarded plastic bags it’s beyond sad.

    That said, I would really be sad to lose my source of “free” small trash can liners. I really think the only way to deal with the problem of discarded plastic bags is to get people to stop tossing them out, but you some people will never learn.

    • axhandler1 says:

      That’s what I use mine for. They’re so convenient for those small bathroom garbage cans.

      • MathMan aka Random Talker says:

        I hear they make for great Halloween masks as well. However, there’s something about breathing holes I’m forgetting….

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      i only toss them out when they are full of cat litter or dog poop or something equally nasty
      i keep trying to recycle the ones with holes in them that aren’t good for reuse, but my local grocery store put the recycling bin for the bags behind the shopping carts so it’s not accessible. instead the back of my car is full of grocery bags stuffed inside a couple of grocery bags and tied shut, waiting for the day that i am at a store with an accessible recycling bin

      • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

        In the mean time, they are ersatz airbags.

        • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

          i got lucky tonight – i was dropping off some items for a yard sale that one of the other rescue volunteers is having to raise money for the cats and she asked if i had any grocery bags for the sale. i was happy to donate those too

  4. Smiley Massacre says:

    I noticed that when I stayed in Lihue and I went to the Kmart and Walmart there. They only had paper bags.

  5. BigHeadEd says:

    If this went into effect where I live, I would replace the fossil fuel-based store bags I reuse for garbage with purchased fossil fuel-based garbage bags. Beyond the issues of unsightly litter from store bags, I’m not seeing the benefit.

    • ARP says:

      It’s primarily aesthetics- you won’t be littering the street with bag you bought. There may be some indirect environmental benefits as well- if you buy bags, you’ll tend to be more thoughtful about their use.

      • who? says:

        You also won’t be littering the inside of a dolphin, if that kind of thing matters to you.

        • Bsamm09 says:

          I hate those things. They snatch my bait or, even worse, a nice redfish I have been fighting for a while. Fuck you flipper!!!

    • longfeltwant says:

      I think the litter is the point, so I assume you must agree that this policy is well considered. As humans, we are bothered by litter because it is unsightly; but there are additional concerns for the ecosystem in general, and especially for Hawaii.

      • BigHeadEd says:

        A fair point but a shame that we can’t convey a convincing enough case for people to not litter and have to resort to forced intervention.

        • longfeltwant says:

          In a libertarian utopia we would all be following the laws without need for the laws. We would enjoy a perfectly organized anarchy. Alas, we are humans, so acting as though that world is possible, is ludicrous.

        • Jane_Gage says:

          These bags are for taking your groceries from point A to point B, after which they get tossed or “recycled” (downcycled since that takes up energy and the polymers begin to break down after one or two cylces). Most people still buy bin liners for their kitchen/lawn waste. I use cloth bags at the store quite happily.

  6. RickinStHelen says:

    Remember that Hawaii is an island state. Plastic bages are brutal on wildlife, and especially aquatic wildlife. It makes ecological sense for Hawaii to do this more so than just about anywhere else. I too use the grocery bags as my trash liners, but I will not be unhappy to see them go away one day.

    • eturowski says:

      This. If you’re a turtle, a plastic bag looks just like a yummy jellyfish. And Hawaii is entirely (small) islands, so there is an extremely high coastline:inland ratio; if you litter, there is an excellent chance of your junk going straight into the Pacific.

    • mauispiderweb says:

      Having lived on Maui for 21 years, I can attest to this. The saddest site I ever saw was the real hidden secret of Maui — the landfill. I hated going there because the sheer amount of garbage being dumped was sickening. Everything from bagged garbage to furniture was tossed. All the trees in the area were decorated with those plastic bags that had flown loose and gotten caught in the branches. I really hope these bans help.

  7. damicatz says:

    Nothing like meddling in other people’s business. What type of bag a store owner uses to choose is of no concern to the government.

    • sumocat says:

      Except this isn’t other people’s business. This law was passed by local government to deal with a problem affecting their community. This is how small government is supposed to work.

    • AtlantaCPA says:

      I think this comment is borderline trollish. Or am I being too generous?

      • Round-Eye 外人はコンスマリッストが好きです。 says:

        We have to hope (s)he is trolling, because I would have a hard time believe anyone is truly that stupid.

    • Costner says:

      You’re right… they should be able to provide asbestos coated bags to consumers if they feel like it!

      Damn government always trying to protect the environment. What the hell are they thinking?

      • damicatz says:

        The notion that government protects the environment is laughable. Governments are some of the largest polluters in the world and they make the worst corporate polluters look like Greenpeace by comparison.

        The US government, during it one of its many (irresponsible) nuclear weapons tests, accidentally irradiated an entire population and killed people (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_Bravo_test#Fallout_incident). Of course, if this had been a private corporation, they would have been fined and sued until they were bankrupt and their executives would have been thrown in jail. But government is only as liable as government says it is; you cannot sue them unless they give you permission to and then they can set a limit on how much damages they pay you.

        Another great example : The “Environmental Protection Agency” routinely assesses penalties against the DoD for pollution which are then promptly ignored.

        • shoelace414 says:

          Just look what happened to Union Carbide after Bhopal.

        • longfeltwant says:

          “The notion that government protects the environment is laughable. “

          Mmm hmm. That’s why the Cuyahoga is still on fire.

          Seriously, dude, give it up. If you aren’t trolling, then you really are lost in an ideology. Doesn’t protect the environment? Seriously? And your examples simply show that the efforts are imperfect? So, if it isn’t perfect, then it’s laughable? Give me a break.

          I grew up in Anchorage. During my adolescence we were the 12th most polluted city on earth! That’s crazy! Then “the government” (a majority of citizens) implemented a smog test program, and we fell off the list. We went from multiple air-quality warnings per year, to zero year after year. Recently, having declared success, the smog program was dismantled. Oh, but what, “the government” did a nuke test once, so none of that smog reduction counts. Yeah, right, okay.

        • Costner says:

          “The notion that government protects the environment is laughable. Governments are some of the largest polluters in the world and they make the worst corporate polluters look like Greenpeace by comparison.”

          And your suggestion for an alternative would be what exactly? It is more than obvious that self-policing by individuals and corporations doesn’t work – thus without environmental guidelines what would our planet look like exactly?

          It might be true we cannot control the world, but we can control our slice of it. Since we aren’t at the point where every individual seems to care, we tend to elect people that can handle it for us. They represent our interests, and thankfully they have created organizations like the EPA which prevent us from having to wear surgical masks when we step outside. We arent forced to drink toxic water nor do we have to visit beaches only to find them covered in oil residue. They hold companies accountable and although they aren’t perfect – they are far, far better than nothing at all.

          I won’t bother to add a lengthy comment on your nuclear example as it tends to be somewhat unrelated here. Everyone knows the government makes mistakes and our past is full of them. What is most important is that we don’t repeat those mistakes, but rather we learn from them and we evolve in the right direction.

          Another great example : The “Environmental Protection Agency” routinely assesses penalties against the DoD for pollution which are then promptly ignored.

          Again – we know they aren’t perfect, but imagine what our nation looked like if the EPA didn’t exist. Aquifers, lakes, rivers and streams would be polluted to the point the water would be undrinkable. A haze would exist in the air which would make breathing difficult in many areas. Fish would be packed iwth so much mercury and there would be so much benzine in the water that you wouldn’t dare eat them. Lifespans would be shorter, medical costs would be higher, people with respitory conditions would live in utter hell. Chemicals would be dumped all across the nation.

          All we need to do is look at our own history coupled with what other nations are struggling with at this very moment to know having a government looking out for the environment is a good thing. Honestly I cannot even fathom how someone could say having such laws and regulations is in any way a net negative when we consider the alternatives. If you honestly believe that most people and corporations would do the right thing on their own without such laws, I challenge you to review some of the cases of drinking water being polluted or entire cities being forced to relocate due to contamination which have all been done in the name of profit.

        • Sound Money Girl says:

          The state of Hawaii certainly has a vested interest in protecting its environment. Tourism is their main economic driver. That tourism is driven by their beautiful natural environment. If that environment is damaged by human activity, tourism goes down, thus eliminating jobs. If banning plastic bags helps protect their environment, then in effect they’re protecting jobs. It also has the added affect of saving businesses money because those bags have to be shipped in.

    • longfeltwant says:

      First, please tell me what you mean by “the government”. The government isn’t a thing that has concerns. Humans have concerns. By “no concern of the government” do you mean “no concern of the people who live in the district of this government”?

      Second, please tell me how it is not a concern of the people who live in the district. I can’t figure out how any thinking person would arrive at that conclusion. It seems like it is very much the concern of the people who live in the district.

      • damicatz says:

        Because the store is private property. Plastic bags do not cause harm to the customers. The fact that someone may discard the plastic bag and that it may pollute does not give the government, any government, the right to go in and micromanage a private business like that.

        “Second, please tell me how it is not a concern of the people who live in the district. I can’t figure out how any thinking person would arrive at that conclusion. It seems like it is very much the concern of the people who live in the district.”

        Because stores are private businesses.

        So unless :
        1.You can prove that the store is directly littering other people’s property with their bags (e.g. having their employees drive around tossing bags out the window).
        2.The bags cause direct injury to people (i.e made out of toxic materials)

        It is not the concern of anyone else. If you don’t like the fact that the business uses plastic bags then you have the freedom to shop somewhere else.

        Telling a store they cannot use plastic bags because other people (i.e not the store) MIGHT at some point in the future litter with them is absurd.

        • longfeltwant says:

          “It is not the concern of anyone else.”

          You keep saying that as if it were true, but it is false. It is so obviously false that I won’t spend too much time trying to convince you. Of course it is anyone else’s concern! If it affects you, then it’s your concern. If it affects you that stores use plastic bags, which it does, then it concerns you. To the extent that it concerns many people, it concerns the government. You are failing in your attempt to draw bright lines around behavior and say that effects of the behavior don’t cross the lines. That is childishly myopic. Stop ignoring reality to try to bolster a political position.

        • crispyduck13 says:

          Because the gun store is private property. Guns do not cause harm to the customers. The fact that someone may discharge the gun improperly and that it may cause injury does not give the government, any government, the right to go in and micromanage a private business like that.

          I know plastic bags are not as dangerous as guns, but your broad argument there just doesn’t hold up.

          • damicatz says:

            The government does not have the right to manage gun stores except to prevent fraud or the direct initiation of force by one person against another person. Guns are tools. I can hit someone over the head with a shovel; should I now be required to register when purchasing shovels?

            Registering weapons gives the government a convenient list of people to round up when they finally decide to ignore the second amendment.

      • StarKillerX says:

        longfeltwant,

        Ironically that same logic was used by the Supreme Court to rule that company, which afterall are simply a collection of people just like a government, have the right to freedom of speech, even political speech and donations.

  8. Bugley says:

    From the article: “On February 9, Kalani High School sophomore Diana Sellner and her friends staked 400 plastic grocery bags on the lawn of the state Capitol in Honolulu to call attention to the 400 million plastic bags now used each year on the island of Oahu.”

    Diana Sellner has a bright future.

  9. Tim says:

    I don’t know if I agree with plastic bag bans. I live in DC, where any disposable bag will cost you 5 cents at restaurants, grocery stores and any establishment that sells food (didn’t know Macy’s sold food, did you). I think it works pretty well. And part of the 5 cents goes to cleaning up the Anacostia River, which is massively polluted.

    • George4478 says:

      Does the 5 cents really go to cleaning up the river? Or does it go into an Anacostia River Cleaning Fund which then gets used for some other pet project?

      //Down here, the Georgia legislature is debating a law that would require the Georgia legislature follow the existing law and stop using fees collected for a specific purpose for other than that specific purpose.

      • Bugley says:

        “Of the five cents charged for each bag, businesses keep one cent, or two if they offer rebates for consumers who bring their own bags. The remaining revenue goes to a government fund that supports cleaning and conservation of the Anacostia River as well as a reusable bag program administered by the District Department of the Environment, according to the Green D.C. website.”

        Regardless of where the money goes, there’s still this:

        “The Washington Post reported that 55 million plastic bags were used in 2010, a sharp decrease from the roughly 270 million bags used in the year prior to the law’s passing. “

        http://www.thehoya.com/news/use-of-plastic-bags-drops-80-percent-in-2010-1.1951691

      • Tmoney02 says:

        All the money (minus the adminstrative costs to the stores) goes to cleaning the river and is locked down (I.e. seperate form the city general fund, No withdrawls to the general fund allowed, etc.)so that it cant be robbed in the future to pay for something else.

        A good thing to becuase the anacostia and its sister river the potomoc that the anacostia flows into provides DC’s Drinking water and is in general in horrible shape.

  10. longfeltwant says:

    Hawaii is a special case for this kind of policy. It is especially important in Hawaii to protect the ecosystem from litter. Will this specific policy be effective? I can’t say, but it makes perfect sense that Hawaii would try it.

    • crispyduck13 says:

      I would think that the problem more in the front of people’s minds there is the garbage issue. On an island like that where do you think all the trash goes? In the Florida Keys, for example, ALL garbage must be hauled by truck or barge onto the mainland for final disposal. The residents pay astronomical fees for this service, I’m sure Hawaii faces the same issue. So they should be trying everything possible to reduce non-compostable waste to save the entire population a lot of money and headache.

  11. Costner says:

    I do understand the need to do this (because let’s face it… people are inconsiderate pussbags), but I would rather they mandate the usage of biodegradable bags such as those made from corn or soybeans. In direct sunlight they start to break down in as little as 30 days. So they could still be used for trash can liners and for wet swimsuits or doggie droppings etc, etc, but if someone did discard one, or if it simply blew away from a trash can or out of a garbage truck… it would decompose rapidly and not create a burden on wildlife on the environment.

    • Bugley says:

      I’m in favor of *truly* biodegradable plastics bags. But some some so-called biodegradable bags are merely made of polyethylene with organic additives which allows it to fragment into tiny little pieces of – you got it – non-biodegradable polyethylene.

    • caradrake says:

      It won’t matter if it decomposes in 30 days, if a turtle eats it on the second day.

    • who? says:

      30 days is probably fine when somebody dumps it on a roadside in Texas. But in Hawaii, it’ll blow into the ocean and be eaten by a dolphin within a day or two.

  12. Darkrose says:

    I have used the same plastic grocery bag to transport my lunch to and from work for almost 3 weeks…I’ll probably send it to the bag recycle bin @ the supermarket when we go this weekend for a food run. just sayin’

    • KLETCO says:

      I’ve used my reusable grocery bag to carry my lunch to and from work for the last 4 years. I’ll probably continue using it for several more years.

    • longfeltwant says:

      Mmm hmm. You know, most people wouldn’t murder either, even if it were legal, but it’s still something we prohibit. This particular law addresses a common behavior which causes problems, even if you personally don’t behave that way.

  13. StarKillerX says:

    This is becoming a more and more common story, and I’m not talking about the plastic bags themselves and instead mean that what the left pushes on the consumer for the sake of saving the environment ends up being worse then the original and is then opposed by the same groups that pushed for them to begin with.

    Who else is old enough to remember the whole push to eliminate paper grocery bags because of all the trees used to make them? If so you will also remember the push to ban freon to save the ozone layer, only after it’s use was regulared and eliminated in many items did we find out that the more expensive replacement that was forced on us is actually worse for the ozone then freon was.

    • RandomHookup says:

      Are you sure about the push to replace paper bags? I don’t remember any such effort by environmentalist, though the stores have been pushing plastic for years because it’s much cheaper for them.

    • shepd says:

      The worst part of it all is that there is an option that isn’t as bad for the environment that actually works better in A/C systems than even freon (the new stuff is actually very inefficient).

      R290, or, as you might call it, propane.

      Yes, it can blow up during a car accident. But you need a lot less of it to make a functioning system, so it’s the equivalent of a can of hairspray exploding. Nothing to get worked up about. And, speaking of fire, did you know that the current and old refrigerants create Phosgene gas when they burn? One lungful of that and you are dead. I think I’d rather take the chances of losing a limb if I had a car accident while sitting on top of the engine bay vs. opening the hood after the accident and dying an agonizing death.

      Yet the EPA banned R290 in cars. R-12 was banned just as the patent ended. I’ll let you figure it all out from there.

      I should mention that propane does run safely in an undamaged car air conditioning system, since other countries (such as America’s hat) don’t ban its use (it’s what you will find in “R-12a” self-ac-fill cans up here) and we don’t get any explosions at all from it. It’s also widely used as a standard refrigerant in Europe and Asia.

    • Sandstar says:

      Because nothing ever changes, and new information doesn’t come out that makes us rethink our old opinions.

      • StarKillerX says:

        Yeah, so keep blinding following the environmental lobby because they have to be right eventually don’t they?

        • Kate says:

          Yeah, because all those cities no longer drowning in pollution is bad, and toxic messes now having to be addressed by those who created them is bad, because no longer using pesticides that were decimating wild bird populations is bad etc etc etc etc.

          Wow, the holes in your memory are bad.

          • shepd says:

            Doing things the inefficient way hurts people. It is wrong to hurt people to save the environment, most especially when you can save it without hurting people. This is the issue I have with hardcore environmentalists. Groups like the WWF believe that the only way to save the planet is to have every last person live in poverty.

            Before you say I’m being crazy:

            http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/05/16/wwf_living_planet_report/

  14. nbs2 says:

    I, for one, welcome the opportunity for the government to clean up spilled trash bins. If I’m out and about, and the kid poos his diaper, I tie it up in a plastic bag and toss it in our garbage when I get home. Any wild animal issues would be my problem, but are generaly avoided since the can is in our garage until trash day.

    If I have to pay directly for a bag, I’ll just toss the diaper in the garbage directly. If racoons, rats, dogs, and cats want to have their way with it, not my problem. But it’s ok, that’s better for the environment.

  15. lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

    I use cloth bags for almost everything now (and wash them so I don’t poison myself), but from time to time I get plastic bags for cat litter scoopings. If I have to buy plastic bags for cat litter scoopings, I’m OK with that if it keeps the bags off the street and from hanging in trees.

    I also save my empty pet food bags and use them for garbage instead of buying garbage bags. They’re not as tidy looking as the white plastic bags, but at least I’m not buying a plastic bag to put a pet food bag into just to send to the landfill.

    • HogwartsProfessor says:

      I do that in the garage trash can, with the pet food bag. I get the big ones and stick them in the can. Most of the garbage in the garage isn’t wet so it works fine.

  16. valthun says:

    I love that after years of fighting to stop using renewable, biodegradable and recyclable paper bags in order to use non-biodegradable but recyclable and reusable plastic bags we now are banning those bags. Yet just about no place uses paper anymore which means places like Hawaii will require the consumer to purchase “reusable” bags.

    As a people we just don’t know what we want apparently.

    • ElBobulo says:

      Think of it in terms of a small group of people that want to continuously throw monkey wrenches into every aspect of our civilization.

    • Round-Eye 外人はコンスマリッストが好きです。 says:

      I actually think that’s a great idea. Ikea does this in Japan, not sure if it’s a thing in the States yet, though. Essentially, you can buy a disposable paper bags for like Â¥100 (~$1.10) or you can buy reusable plastic bag for Â¥99. There are no free bag options aside from bringing your own. I almost feel like the price for the bags should be even steeper to promote bringing your own.

  17. longfeltwant says:

    Are you sure about that? Really really sure? So sure that you are ignoring the many grocery stores which today give a discount to consumers who eschew store bags in favor of bringing their own bags?

    Anyway, the cost of the bags isn’t really significant. It’s a tiny cost. This isn’t about the cost. The tiny cost savings from the bags will simply get lost in the slow creep of grocery prices. Eventually, yes, price competition will squeeze out that margin, but you won’t notice.

  18. oldwiz65 says:

    I love it.

  19. nopirates says:

    i live in NYC and there is trash everywhere, most of it plastic bags. i would love to see these things banned in NYC.

  20. Buy used! says:

    Given Hawaii’s location, there are special considerations about plastic bag harm to our aquatic friends. However, the pros and cons of plastic vs. paper aren’t so clear cut. Processing wood pulp for paper bags is a highly toxic process, and our municipality concluded that the overall harm for each are about equal. A better and more effective fight, in my opinion, is advocating for accurate (i.e., higher) fuel prices.

  21. gman863 says:

    Next season on Hawaii Five-0:

    Dumpa Mani Baggi: Wo Fat is implicated in a massive plastic bag import scam. Meanwhile, the fat guy selling shrimp gives a three-minute pitch on why Subway sandwiches wrapped in a paper bag taste better.

    Bag ‘em, Danno..

  22. Dr.Wang says:

    What will the homeless use for luggage when this kicks-in?

  23. Debbie says:

    Does this mean that store will stop using those ridiculous plastic bags and go back to paper ones that keep their shape and will stand up in the trunk of the car?