This is important because we are consuming more and more virtually useless petroleum products. Single use plastic shopping bags are made out of oil, they are very toxic; we use them for 10 minutes and they take hundreds, even thousands of years to decompose.
When they are recycled, (only about 1%, but that's something) most of them are turned into low quality items such as doormats that end up in a landfill anyways. Also, a lot of plastic carrier bags never make it to the landfill. They end up killing a defenseless animal in the Pacific Ocean.
In 50 years from now, it is estimated we will be out of oil, if not sooner. We need to stop being greedy humans and take care of where we live, planet Earth. Ban the plastic shopping bags in New Mexican grocery stores!
Also view the blog for this petition here.
Change, however necessary, is difficult to bring on. We are used to living in a disposable society, where once we’re done with something, we throw it away. End of story. We don’t see that mass of plastic junk that will never go away seeping into our groundwater. We don’t realize that one of the highest points on the eastern seaboard is a landfill. We don’t know that we are making so much trash that we have to ship half of it to 3rd world countries. The first step in change is alerting the public to the current situation.
I alerted you, and now that you know, it is your duty as government to do something. You may be wondering, “What can I do?” I suggest taking small steps that have big impact. In the United States, we use about 100 billion plastic shopping bags each year, and only about 1% of those are recycled. When they are recycled most of them get turned into things like doormats, which end up in a landfill anyways. This is called “down-cycling,” because it never really solves the problem.
What will really make a difference is eliminating plastic shopping bags in New Mexico stores that sell groceries. This process can’t be instantaneous, but you must have a deadline for stores that they can’t have plastic shopping bags anymore. I suggest giving them anywhere from 4-8 months to use up their stocks of plastic shopping bags, but don’t let them order any more. They will have to replace with paper or reusable bags. Though many say paper is worse than plastic, paper can be recycled 6 to 7 times, while plastic can only be recycled once, if that.
We as the human race have some responsibility to take on. We are more concerned with money than we are with our planet. Money isn’t going to buy the millions of species we have killed. Money won’t buy us a new ocean, or any new ecosystem. Money will not buy us a new planet. If you don’t put this to the top of your list, it shows that you care more about your next election than our future. I am asking you to broaden your mind and think about our whole future. When adults say that the kids of today will solve the problems, that is just being lazy, especially considering the planet you are leaving us. We all need to change before it’s too late. If you won’t do this for the children, do it for the animals that we are poisoning with plastic. The only person that can make you change is you. This isn’t about what you should do. It’s about what has to be done. Thank you for your time and consideration.