How About Giving Up Plastic Bags for Lent?

Today marks the start of Lent, a 40 day period that Christians use for personal reflection in preparation for Easter. As part of that reflection, many people give up something that they feel is inhibiting their lives – alcohol, chocolate and other sweets are some of the most popular things to “give up.” If you’re looking for something unique that will be good for you and good for the community, how about giving up plastic shopping bags. 

Why give up the bag? A major study conducted by AWS found that plastic bags make up at least 21% of trash in the Anacostia River. These bags clog storm drains, cause flooding, are harmful to wildlife, and are virtually impossible to clean up.

Maryland Legislature Bolsters Efforts to Reduce Pollution

Responds to charges of taxing the rain


By Dan Smith & Lori Baranoff

Polluted stormwater runoff from streetChallenged for much of the past year for requiring the state’s largest jurisdictions to set fees for local polluted runoff reduction projects, the Maryland General Assembly took action this week to give local jurisdictions flexibility in how they raise these important pollution-reduction funds. The Assembly also affirmed requirements that the work get done. The bill now goes to Gov. Larry Hogan for signing.

DC’s Bag Law – It’s Working!


A new study shows that Washington DC’s Bag Law is working for both consumers and businesses. That’s the conclusion of a study commissioned by the District Department of the Environment (DDOE) that surveyed residents and businesses to measure the impact of the law that was implemented four years ago to reduce plastic bag litter, especially in streams and the Anacostia and Potomac Rivers. Across the District there has been a significant reduction in disposable bag use: businesses have reduced their use of bags by 50% on average, and four in five DC residents now carry reusable bags when shopping, with 58% stating that they carry them “most of the time” or “always.”

Of the 600 randomly surveyed DC residents –

Newsletter

 

Browse our newsletter archive to read articles previously published in our quarterly newsletter, Voice of the River!

Subscribe

Stay informed of the latest watershed issues by subscribing to our free email updates & event announcements.