Paper or Plastic?

A proposal has passed for the City of Toronto legislating that plastic shopping bags will be charged 5-cents each starting June 1, 2008.

Great!  I already have green bags that I forget to use from time to time, but I’m not sure that punishment way is the way to go.

Loblaw and its subsidiaries have an awesome incentive program, crediting 50 PC points for each green bag you use when you shop with them.  I think you usually get 10 points for each dollar spent, so it’s like you’re getting $5 for free…kind of.  In reality, you’re only getting 5 cents, because when you cash in your points, you get $1 for 1000 PC points.  In any case, an incentive program is much more rewarding then a punishment program.

I do wonder, however, where all the money will go.  I assume it will be passed through to the government to pay for environmental initiatives.

I also wonder how they’re going to enforce this.  Just like taxes, I’m certain that many independent mom & pop shops will neglect to charge this amount.  Or, extremely unethical store owners will charge the shopper for each plastic bag, and then fail to record the sale, skimming the new revenue and not sending it to the rightful organization.

Really, as long as you plan your shopping trips, there is no excuse for not having a reusable bag.

Hm…I guess my family will have to start buying specifically intended kitchen garbage catchers.

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