Wednesday, August 27, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Davis, we’re falling behind on plastic bags

By Drucella Anne Miranda

When people first think of Davis, they often think of UC Davis. We are all aware that the university is known for its prestigious agriculture and veterinary programs, but more recently, UCD is known for its environmental contributions.

The city of Davis also has a history of environmental consciousness. But is Davis living up to its reputation? As I was collecting petitions for the California Public Interest Research Group’s Oceans Campaign to ban single-use plastic bags locally on a Saturday at the Farmers Market, the reaction I got from several people was, “Wow, that hasn’t passed in Davis yet?”

According to the 2012 Davis Natural Resources Commission staff report, the plastic bags we bring home after shopping make up approximately 50 to 60 percent of our litter in the Yolo County Central Landfill. It’s also estimated that 1,815 man-hours per year are spent picking up litter at the landfill. This means that roughly $34,000 is spent annually on cleanup costs just for plastic bags. Banning plastic bags would save money locally and help reduce overall waste production in California.

More importantly, a bag ban would help protect the Earth in the long run. We may not live near an ocean, which is becoming increasingly polluted with plastic and other debris, but we are still a part of this planet.

Plastic bags are also affecting our environment on a local level as bags get caught in nesting areas of local wildlife. The truth is we need to put in some effort to remember to bring our own reusable bags because nothing we use for a few minutes should pollute our world for hundreds of years.

Sixty-four cities in California already have banned plastic bags. We should not let Davis fall behind as California transitions to help protect our environment. A Davis ordinance has not yet passed because our City Council has not scheduled the vote yet.

Last year, council members said they would make a decision after the state votes on the statewide bag ban. For the second year in a row, the state has shown it is not going to take action on this issue. Davis’ City Council needs to step up now and give legislators one more reason to vote on a statewide bag ban when it comes up again.

Here’s what will happen if the ordinance goes into effect: Single-use plastic bags will be banned in Davis stores, but businesses downtown are exempted. Also, stores will sell paper bags for under 10 cents if you do not have reusable cloth bags of your own.

Davis is falling behind. With a goal of becoming zero-waste and the reputation of being an environmentally progressive city on the line, it just makes sense for Davis to follow the lead of other forward-thinking cities and ban single-use plastic bags.

We urge you to voice your support; let the City Council know this is something that residents support. You can do this by emailing council members, urging them to schedule a vote, by signing the CalPIRG petition at the Farmers Market and, most importantly, by spreading the world about this issue and its importance among your friends and family members. The more people who come on board and are vocal on this issue, the sooner we will achieve this great leap forward.

— Drucella Anne Miranda just completed her first year at UC Davis. An environmental science major, she was a spring-quarter intern for CalPIRG’s Oceans Campaign.

Comments

comments

Special to The Enterprise

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    City, plaintiffs settle suit over water rates

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Scrap the MRAP, council says, but wants a talk with cops

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Yolo grows sunflower seeds for the world

    By Margaret Burns | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    True Blue Devil Arnold gave back starting in high school

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Gaza cease-fire holds as sides weigh gains

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    California beach town sees flooding from hurricane

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

     
    Assembly passes campus sexual-assault bill

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    American militant reportedly killed in Syria

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Sunder campaign distributes signs

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Dinner, auction benefit Yolo County CASA

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Farmworkers’ son wins prestigious NIH scholarship

    By Julia Ann Easley | From Page: A3 | Gallery

    Interested in Portuguese? Drop by I-House

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Play groups offered by Center for Families

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Solar-cooking workshop set at Food Co-op

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Give blood and get a free movie ticket

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Chat with Poppenga at coffee shop

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Raley’s pays $1.6 million to settle hazardous-waste lawsuit

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Back-to-school party benefits Archer campaign

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Breast cancer program examines surgery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Crisis nursery bill on governor’s desk

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Global warming on group’s agenda

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    A sweet reward for turning in cash

    By Kathy Keatley Garvey | From Page: A4

     
    Yolo Federal to hold photo contest

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Try yoga, meditation at Holistic Health Center

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Troops get ‘Hugs From Home’

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Documentary reveals ‘The Village Under the Forest’

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    UCD West Village gets an electric Zipcar

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

     
    Little Rock hero featured at reunion

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    UCD ranks No. 16 for serving the public interest

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

    Wolk’s infrastructure bill clears state Senate

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

     
    .

    Forum

    Parents could use a hand at home

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Obama risks alienating Latinos

    By Tom Elias | From Page: A6

    A water plan for all of California

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

     
    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

    MRAP sends the wrong message

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

     
    Play structure idea endorsed

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    Thanks for firearms info

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

     
    .

    Sports

    Buschman, Cats mute the Sounds

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    New coach eager to see his Aggie charges hit the courses

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Shaw respects Aggies, while Gould is happy to get a shot at Stanford

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Devils prep for tough 2014 volleyball schedule

    By Chris Saur | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Bumgarner deals as Giants blank Rockies

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Carter’s blast send Astros past A’s

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Sports briefs: Online registration ends Friday for Labor Day Races

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B8 | Gallery

     
    .

    Features

    Field to fork: Play catch-up with summer’s produce

    By Dan Kennedy | From Page: A10 | Gallery

     
    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    Franco M. Navazio, M.D.

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Wednesday, August 27, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B6