Plastic bags not biggest source of ocean pollution

Regarding the recent editorial regarding a ban on plastic bags (“Statewide plastic bag ban a good place to start,” The Herald, Nov. 30), I would say you presented a fairly good discussion both pro and con. However there was a strong odor of anti-plastic bag lingering. Banning plastic bags sounds like a noble cause. It will surely be cheered by those that embrace all things environmentally friendly. Especially in this state.

The problem is banning plastic bags in Washington will have virtually zero impact on plastic pollution in the oceans. The U.S. contributes less than 5 percent and plastic bags a much smaller percentage of that amount. The biggest players are various types of plastic containers and bottles. Bottom line, eliminating plastic bags in our little state won’t do a darn thing to improve the oceans. What it will do is make it more complicated, expensive and cumbersome to go shopping. Use your head and don’t go down this foolish road.

This is nothing more than a feel-good tilted windmill. If you don’t want a plastic bag ask for paper or bring your own. It’s your choice and right but do not shove your misguided policy down my throat. Nobody wants to see a bunch of plastic garbage floating around in the worlds oceans. However let’s focus against the major contributors for the greatest impact.

Michael Barmuta


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