THE IMPACT OF USING A REUSABLE GROCERY BAG
Plastic bags have a much larger environmental footprint than you may imagine, beginning with the energy required to make them. Twelve million barrels of oil are used to manufacture the plastic bags consumed in the U.S. each year.
More than 100,000 marine animal deaths are caused each year when marine animals mistake plastic shopping bags in the ocean for food. Plastic bags also get snagged in trees, and small animals can become trapped in them.
Unlike plastic bags, reusable bags are unlikely to have their handle tear-off or develop a hole if the corner of a box or other sharp products press into them. Reusable bags are easier to use for both loading and unloading groceries, and your purchases are more likely to survive the trip to and from the store.
The average American family uses nearly 1,500 plastic shopping bags each year, according to grocery shopping statistics from the Natural Resources Defense Council. If each bag costs a nickel, that's 75$ a year you could save on grocery bags.
USE IT FOR OTHER THINGS
Reusable grocery bags can be used for a lot more than carrying groceries. A nice reusable bag is essentially a structured tote bag and can be used for many of the things you'd use a tote bag for. You can pack your lunch in them, use them to carry snacks on a road trip, take books to and from the library, etc.
TOO LONG TO BREAK DOWN
Plastic products such as plastic bags can take between 15 and 1,000 years to break down.
Even when good intentions lead someone to recycle their plastic grocery bags, a lot of recycling equipment can't handle the task. Bags get snagged on conveyors belts and wheels, clogging the machinery.
YOU THINK IT'S HARD?
If it's hard to imagine life without plastic grocery bags, consider that plastic grocery bags were introduced at grocery stores in 1977. Generations of people over thousands of years got along just fine using their own bags to carry their purchases home and you can too.