Oregon considering statewide ban of single-use plastic bags

Oregon is reportedly considering enforcing a ban on single-use plastic checkout bags.

The state's House Committee on Energy and Environment took up a bill on the subject on Tuesday, according to Oregon Public Broadcasting. The bill, which proponents are calling the Sustainable Shopping Initiative, would ban retail establishments from providing customers anything to carry their goods but a recycled paper bag. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Under the bill's provision, stores would be mandated to charge at least 10 cents per recyclable paper bag, according to The Salem Statesman Journal. Retailers would also be given the option to sell reusable checkout bags made of cloth or durable plastic. 

“As Oregonians, we live in one of the most beautiful places on earth. We have the responsibility to protect the natural resources our environment and our economy depend on,” state Rep. Carla Piluso (D), one of the bill’s sponsors, said ahead of a public hearing on the proposal, The Statesman Journal reported. 

The plastic-bag ban would not apply to meat and vegetable bags. Restaurants and other food-service operations would not be required to abide by the law. 

But The Statesman Journal noted that Piluso has proposed an amendment that would require restaurants to follow the same provisions as other retail establishments. 

Oregon has attempted multiple times to enforce statewide single-use plastic bag ban. A total of 16 cities have already instituted local laws banning single-use plastic bags. 

No action was taken on the bill or the proposed amendment on Tuesday, according to The Statesman Journal.