Monthly Archives: June 2013

New Article Posted: “Reusable Bags and Ergonomic Issues”

A new article has been posted titled “Reusable Bags and Ergonomic Issues” by Anthony van Leeuwen.

The article provides some useful information about reusable bag sizes, volume, and average weight when filled. Consumers should educate themselves about bag sizes and weights when filled, to avoid wasting money by buying bags that are too large and heavy when filled by store employees.

With more and more communities in California and the nation adopting plastic carryout bag bans ergonomic safety issues related to using reusable bags have been largely ignored.  The chief selling point often touted by proponents is that “Reusable bags hold more than plastic bags”.  What is often overlooked is that “If reusable bags hold more, they weigh more.”  This means that handling of heavier reusable bags by both store employees and customers alike, present ergonomic safety hazards that should be taken into consideration.


New Article Posted: “Plastic Bag Alternatives Much More Costly to Consumers”

A new article has been posted titled “Plastic Bag Alternatives Much More Costly to Consumers” by Anthony van Leeuwen, Fight The Plastic Bag Ban, and Don Williams, Stop The Bag Ban. The article is work of collaboration between two engineers both of whom have a passion to defeat plastic bag bans on the grounds that bans are the wrong solution to litter problems that adversely affects residents.

The new article expands on an earlier article titled “Shopping will cost more with Plastic Bag Ban” and includes a table comparing the different bagging options available to consumers. The article looks at costs associated with purchasing your own plastic carryout bags, purchasing store supplied paper bags, and purchasing and using your own reusable bags. The cost to retailers of supplying you with “free” plastic carryout bags is also estimated for comparison. The article looks at both the cost of bags and the value of labor or personal time associated with managing bags and in the case of reusable bags the time required to wash or sanitize bags.

We show that the cost to retail stores to supply a typical family plastic carryout bags is about $21 per year; whereas, that same family would spend up to $300 per year to use reusable bags. That is a factor of more than 14 times as much.


Residents Launch Initiative to Stop Bag Bans

Residents in Campbell, California who are opposed to plastic carryout bag bans have filed official paperwork to launch an initiative petition which will allow the citizens of Campbell to vote to block bag bans from coming to their city. Their effort, supported by the Stop the Bag Ban citizen’s group, will be the first such effort launched in California empowering the people to stop a bag ban.

Bag bans typically ban plastic carryout bags and impose a minimum fee on paper bags issued with the goal of coercing shoppers to use reusable bags.  Bag bans have been adopted by the governing bodies in over 70 municipalities and counties in California; however, none has ever allowed their citizens to affirm or overturn their decision by popular vote.

The proposed initiative would add language to Campbell’s Municipal Code to prohibit carryout bag bans, taxes, or minimum fees, and would overturn any laws that had been passed prior to the vote.

According to petition co-organizer Larry Grattan, a long time Campbell resident, a bag ban is simply not needed.  He stated that arguments for a bag ban are weak and more of an emotional plea that ends up taking away the freedoms and rights of businesses and individuals, exposes the public to increased health risks, and increases the monetary cost of shopping.

“If someone wants to use a reusable bag, then they have that right,” said Larry Grattan, “but it is wrong to force the other 90% of the people who freely choose plastic or paper bags to use reusable bags against their will.”  

Signature gathering is expected to begin in early July. The petitioners will have 6 months to gather enough signatures to force the initiative to a vote of the people at the next general election or to force a special election if needed to stop implementation of a bag ban passed by the city council.

 To read the press release in its entirety, click on the following link:

New Video From Americans For Prosperity Titled “Common Sense”

David Spady from Americans For Prosperity – California created a video titled “Common Sense” where he discusses the outrageous hypocrisy of those who push plastic bags bans on communities in California.  You can watch the video yourself by clicking on the following link:

This video is well worth watching.  If you think this video was worthwhile seeing please forward the link to people your friends.