Does a ban on plastic bags really work?

One Ohio city already has the law on the books.

Does a ban on plastic bags really work?

ORANGE VILLAGE, OH (WOIO) - Cuyahoga County Council appears to be one step closer to passing a ban on single-use grocery store style plastic bags.

At a committee meeting Wednesday night, the ordinance received unanimous support from members.

If it does pass a ban, it would not be the first governing body in the state to do so.

Orange Village’s council did that already, back in December.

The ordinance went into effect on April 1.

The mayor told 19 News no businesses have been cited under the ordinance, and the roll out has gone smoothly.

Lindsey Rich said she doesn’t see an issue with a plastic bag ban.

“I mean, you just get reusable bags,” Rich said. “Yeah, you forget them. They’ll have them there for inexpensive prices to buy, and you get another reusable bag. It doesn’t seem like a big issue.”

There have been questions whether the ban is effective.

According to a recent study in Denmark, where plastic bags are currently banned, a single cotton bag would need to be used 20,000 times to equal the environmental savings of a plastic bag.

However, the study authors did not account for littering or pollution from the bags themselves, which often end up in local bodies of water, like Lake Erie.

Some business advocacy groups, many with a nationwide network, have also spoken out against the ban, saying it should be the choice of the consumer.

However, the ability of municipalities to govern this may soon be curbed by the state legislature.

A proposed law, currently under debate by lawmakers, would prohibit local councils from banning plastic bags.

It’s not clear if that law will pass.

Similar measures have already been enacted in other states.

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