Join SA Current Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Texas Supreme Court Overturns Plastic Bag Ban, Here's What's at Stake

Posted By on Fri, Jun 22, 2018 at 2:48 PM

click to enlarge The effect of plastic bag pollution on a river. - WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
  • Wikimedia Commons
  • The effect of plastic bag pollution on a river.
The Texas Supreme Court today handed a defeat to local governments and the environment by knocking down the city of Laredo's ban on plastic bags.

The conservative-dominated court ruled unanimously that Texas' solid waste disposal laws pre-empt the city's ability to implement the program. The likely outcome? It looks like other cities with bag bans, Austin for example, will be unable to enforce them.

So, the likely next step for the issue is the Texas Legislature — assuming it can carve out some time to do anything other than dictate what bathrooms transgender people can use.

With an uncertain path ahead in the Republican-dominated legislature, here's a quick reminder of why one-use plastic bags suck bad enough that communities as widespread as Washington, D.C., and Karnataka, India, have banned them:
  • Worldwide, as many as one trillion plastic bags are used each year and less than 5 percent of plastic is recycled, according to the EPA.
  • The U.S. uses more than 380 billion plastic bags and wraps annually, requiring 12 million barrels of oil to produce, also according to the EPA.
  • Plastic marine debris kills over 100,000 marine turtles and mammals every year, Californians Against Waste estimates.
  • Plastic grocery bags were the seventh most common item collected during the Ocean Conservancy’s 2014 International Coastal Cleanup.
  • The New York City Sanitation Department collects 1,700 tons of plastic bags weekly at $12.5 million cost to taxpayers for disposal.
Stay on top of San Antonio news and views. Sign up for our Weekly Headlines Newsletter.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

San Antonio Current works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of San Antonio and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep San Antonio's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

June 3, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


© 2020 San Antonio Current

Website powered by Foundation