Ban Plastic Bags in Utah

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Single use plastic bags are filling up our landfills, covering our cities and parks, damaging our recycling centers, and eventually making their way to the oceans; killing marine life and damaging Utah health. Utah legislature wants to kill the proposed ban on plastic bags because their priorities rest with their’s and their partner’s pocket books, not on the health of the state, nation, oceans, and their denizens. Switching to more biodegradable bags, or increasing funding towards reusable bags, can be financially beneficial and will serve the community and the state. 

Why Recycle?
Salt Lake City collects recyclables from an estimated 45,000 residential homes, and 1,100 small businesses and multi-family complexes every day, five days per week.  An average of 750 tons of material are recycled each month.

Recycling this amount of material each month saves the equivalent of:

7,379 mature trees (91,427,200 sheets of copy paper)
3,030 cubic yards of landfill space (the annual space needed for 3,891 people)
2,353,583 kWh of electricity (enough to power the needs of 225 homes)
2,604 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions
4,011,430 gallons of water (enough to meet the daily needs of over 50,000 people).

China banned the use of plastic bags, and only 4 year later, they had removed 40 BILLION bags from the environment. 

These plastic bags will end up in our landfills. When landfill space is overused, production of methane and NMOC’s (non-methane organic compounds) increases. These airborne chemicals contribute heavily to air pollution; Utah as a state consistently ranks in the top five when its Air Quality Index is considered, and Salt Lake City is ranked number 78 in the WORLD on air pollution according to airvisual.com , which also regards AQI. Banning plastic bags in the state of Utah will reduce space in landfills, improve our ability to recycle by preventing clogging and damaging of recycling machines, and increase our air quality/the health of its citizens.