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  Reply # 2071583 10-Aug-2018 23:32
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Fred99:

 

Geektastic:

 

Additionally the plastic in the bags probably pales into significance in comparison to the packaging the food you'll be putting in them comes with!

 

 

Yes I agree completely.

 

So should we do nothing at all because it really doesn't matter - or make a start - even if it's just low hanging fruit?

 

 

No but shifting the plastic to biodegradable alternatives might be easier on people that an outright ban.

 

One company I admire is Hawkes Bay company Bostock Chicken. Not only do they produce very nice organic chicken they have now revamped their packaging so that the chicken comes in biodegradable vegetable origin 'plastic'. That is a smart change.

 

 

 

cf Weetbix: packed in cardboard boxes AND plastic bags. So every box of Weetbix sold in the world is one more plastic bag, regardless of what you carry it home in. The biscuits could be stacked and wrapped in paper, which is used elsewhere for similar products and which is biodegradable.






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  Reply # 2071584 10-Aug-2018 23:37
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MikeB4:

 

The use again and again and again bags are way better for carrying groceries. No flimsy plastic film to break and send your purchases everywhere. They dont cut into ones fingers when carrying them to the car. They don't slide around as much in the trunk when driving home. They don't add to the destruction of the ocean and our food chain.

 

 

 

 

It is funny that supermarkets aren't bring back the old brown paper bag, which they ironically replaced with the plastic ones. Paper is  recycable and also reusable, and potentially environmentally friendly. Also there are cornstarch bags. Apparently these reusuable bags also have plastic in them and way, and they aren't all that durable as the handles break off easily over time, and they develop holes. 

 

 

 

Personally I think this ban is just tokenism, and a distraction. Far more plastic is used elsewhere in supermarkets.  Also most every product has some plastic in the packaging. Bring back more glass bottles, metal lids, tin cans with zinc linings etc . It is ironic that the old packing types were far more environmentally friendly. 


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  Reply # 2071585 10-Aug-2018 23:41
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Pumpedd:

 

It seems we need to bring back glass bottles....assume it is possible,

 

 

I import literally tons of Beer from all over the world (U.S and E.U) Typically it is either in glass or aluminium cans. Both are technically recyclable.

 

I would like to think that both are disposed of via recycling in NZ.

 

I say technically recyclable because I don't know what happens once it is in the recycling bin.

 

DFP

 

  


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  Reply # 2071588 10-Aug-2018 23:54
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debo:

 

Fred99:

 

I do wish you'd stop referring to "greenies" in the pejorative as point number one, and point number two, then suggest that I'm a "greenie".  I worked with and for global chemical / petrochemical companies whose names would make a greenies' eyes glow red if I handed them an old business card.

 

I do think you need to get over the negativity about the plastic bag ban,  It's not a big deal, but a start, Reducing use of plastic is a good idea.  Reducing use of asbestos or lead in gasoline or prohibiting dumping untreated human waste out the bedroom window onto the road while screaming "gardyloo"  was a good idea.  It's not that hard.  Plastic is fantastic if used appropriately, but using is stupidly is... really very dumb.  One-use plastic bags to carry stuff home from the shop is really just nuts.  Pointless stupidity.  Yet here we are - several pages into a discussion, with a few people still trying to argue in favour of pointless stupidity.

 

And if you argue against that abject stupidity, you're accused of being a "greenie" as if that's an insult.

 

 

You don't seem to get my point. We should minimise the impact to the environment. Asbestos, leaded petrol, and window toilets all had better options, so they changed.  Using heavy weight plastic bags that will last for decades it the ocean is pointless stupidity and is NOT a better solution. The plastic bag ban is a start in the wrong direction. You are right thou, plastic is fantastic if used appropriately,  and mostly is. It keeps food fresh and safe to eat.  It allows me to shop at least fortnightly (has been closer to monthly lately). If it gets banned,  then i will need to shop more often, increasing global warming.  

 

 

I do get your point - but you're actually wrong.  Asbestos, lead in petrol, biffing turds out the window had specific undesirable outcomes, there was an additional cost to eliminate that.

 

Plastic is great if used appropriately - yay - we agree on something.  No - the supermarket one-use plastic ban isn't a step in the wrong direction - it's a small step in the right direction.

 

I didn't realise until a few minutes ago why this is an issue.  I've read the news, and apparently the unpopular and hapless leader of the opposition has weighed in - not just against the ban, but in favour of one-use plastic bags.  It shouldn't be a political issue - I'd wager that with reservations, the past leaders of the National Party would have heartily supported what Countdown etc have done as their choice, although probably not have supported a legislative ban.  Bridges' action sabotages what those companies have done.  He's an idiot - they need to get rid of him.

 

May I suggest to mods that this thread is shifted to the "politics" forum,  It's no longer a rational scientific debate - it's turned into team sport.

 

 


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  Reply # 2071590 11-Aug-2018 00:20
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Davy: We lived for thousands of years without single-use plastic bags and bottles - I'm confident that we can survive without them.

 

How glib. I guess you'll be giving up your car, iphones, big screen tv's, computer and everything else on that basis too? 

 

What do you think the environmental effect of those things are, regardless how many times you use them, or in fact every single time you use them?

 

I am for making some positive changes.

 

 


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  Reply # 2071591 11-Aug-2018 00:24
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vexxxboy:

 

come on they are still using plastic in every department , it's hard not to be cynical when they do nothing about the use of plastics in every other department, i mean they wrap Cabbages in cling film, they could use recyclable meat trays but they dont  , so the only right thing they are doing is something that will save them millions every year.

 

 

New World uses a different type of tray for meat now. I wasn't a fan initially, but have come to think they are largely better now. 

 

 


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  Reply # 2071598 11-Aug-2018 01:51
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mattwnz:

 

It is funny that supermarkets aren't bring back the old brown paper bag, which they ironically replaced with the plastic ones. Paper is  recycable and also reusable, and potentially environmentally friendly. Also there are cornstarch bags. Apparently these reusuable bags also have plastic in them and way, and they aren't all that durable as the handles break off easily over time, and they develop holes. 

 

 

Actually, those brown paper bags are actually worse, as the environmental impact of their production is such that you must use it three times for it to have less of an impact on climate change than the current "single-use" plastic bag (seven times if all plastic bags are reused as bin liners, nine times if all plastic bags are reused three times). All documented in the very consultation that this thread is about (which I'd encourage you all to actually read. The whole thing).

 

Supermarkets actually replaced brown paper bags with more environmentally options - plastic bags. The problem isn't the product, it's the people. People need to start properly managing their waste - reuse the bag; and when it can no longer be reused, into the soft plastics recycling bin it goes. But people are lazy, so they end up on the streets, in the landfill, all sorts of other places that they weren't meant to go.


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  Reply # 2071599 11-Aug-2018 02:43
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Kyanar:

 

 

 

Supermarkets actually replaced brown paper bags with more environmentally options - plastic bags. The problem isn't the product, it's the people. People need to start properly managing their waste - reuse the bag; and when it can no longer be reused, into the soft plastics recycling bin it goes. But people are lazy, so they end up on the streets, in the landfill, all sorts of other places that they weren't meant to go.]

 

 

The thing is that the government are considering plastic bags 'single use' even though some people may reuse them. So the fact that they maybe reused multiple times doesn't come into it because at the end of that use, it still ends up being disposed of, and not being able to be broken down.

 

The difference though is paper can be recycled, and can break down into compost. Whereas plastic can't, that is the major difference. Plastic bags may break down into smaller bits over time, bit it still exists as small particles, which have ended up in the food stream. You mention putting the plastic bag into a recycle bin, but is it actually recycled? There are apparently big stockpiles of plastic watse becuase we don't do much recycling in NZ, and other countries are now banning NZ plastic waste. This point was mentioned on one news tonight.

 

But the whole thing is that there are alternatives to plastic bags, that look and work similar to plastic, such as those corn starch ones, which can breakdown in compost bins. Supermarkets need to use these. Some NZ companies are using them, so I wonder if they will end up being banned, due to them looking like plastic..


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  Reply # 2071602 11-Aug-2018 03:59
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scuwp:

Well intentioned, and I am not against the idea, but it won't make a jot of difference to the environment.    NZ was never the problem when it came to ocean pollution with plastics, and people will just go out any buy plastic bags for bin liners, dog droppings, and everything else these 'multi-use' bags were used for so it will achieve absolutely zilch, other than create 'look at me' headlines for the politicians. 


   


 


 


 


 



Except if we take this attitude why ever bother with any measure, just sit back and say it won't make any difference while the world burns.

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  Reply # 2071611 11-Aug-2018 08:01
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Council rubbish bags are single use. We buy paper ones then?



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  Reply # 2071613 11-Aug-2018 08:36
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Batman: Council rubbish bags are single use. We buy paper ones then?


Likely wouldn’t come under the legislation, it’s more about the single use bag at retail point of sale.

Most councils either have or are heading to bins for rubbish collection.

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  Reply # 2071633 11-Aug-2018 09:15
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mattwnz:

 

The thing is that the government are considering plastic bags 'single use' even though some people may reuse them. So the fact that they maybe reused multiple times doesn't come into it because at the end of that use, it still ends up being disposed of, and not being able to be broken down.

 

 

Not really. Their consultation specifically calls out the impact of alternatives vs the humble plastic bag using specific numbers of reuses. They estimate that 40% of all plastic bags actually get reused a single time. This is consistent with the Australian argument when the ban was announced (or, as I like to call it, "mah bin liners!")

 

The difference though is paper can be recycled, and can break down into compost. Whereas plastic can't, that is the major difference. Plastic bags may break down into smaller bits over time, bit it still exists as small particles, which have ended up in the food stream. You mention putting the plastic bag into a recycle bin, but is it actually recycled? There are apparently big stockpiles of plastic watse becuase we don't do much recycling in NZ, and other countries are now banning NZ plastic waste. This point was mentioned on one news tonight.

 

The environmental impact of paper recycling is actually not great. Yes, it saves on cutting down a tree as no new raw materials are needed. But, the major problem is that there are also massive downsides associated with paper bags. For example: a standard paper bag weighs 55g, a standard plastic bag weighs 7-8g. To transport 2,000,000 plastic bags, it takes one truck. To transport the same number of paper bags, it takes seven trucks. Plastic bags can be reused several times, paper bags cannot as they tend to fail.

 

Paper bags also consume 4.7 times more water during manufacture, emit 2.7 times more acid gas than plastic bags, and 3.1 times more greenhouse gases.

 

On the whole, paper bags are empirically worse for the environment. So much so that Taiwan actually rescinded a plastic bag ban in 2006 due to the fact it increased their carbon footprint massively.

 

It's great that the plastic bag biodegrades and gets recycled, but if the manufacture destroys the planet first, it's all a bit pointless.

 

But the whole thing is that there are alternatives to plastic bags, that look and work similar to plastic, such as those corn starch ones, which can breakdown in compost bins. Supermarkets need to use these. Some NZ companies are using them, so I wonder if they will end up being banned, due to them looking like plastic..

 

 

Well, except for the problem that there are very few facilities capable of composting them - they do not biodegrade under normal conditions, they require very specific ones to actually do so. Australia has very few of these facilities, I wouldn't put it past NZ to have none.


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  Reply # 2071642 11-Aug-2018 09:42
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mattwnz:

 

Kyanar:

 

 

 

Supermarkets actually replaced brown paper bags with more environmentally options - plastic bags. The problem isn't the product, it's the people. People need to start properly managing their waste - reuse the bag; and when it can no longer be reused, into the soft plastics recycling bin it goes. But people are lazy, so they end up on the streets, in the landfill, all sorts of other places that they weren't meant to go.]

 

 

The thing is that the government are considering plastic bags 'single use' even though some people may reuse them. So the fact that they maybe reused multiple times doesn't come into it because at the end of that use, it still ends up being disposed of, and not being able to be broken down.

 

The difference though is paper can be recycled, and can break down into compost. Whereas plastic can't, that is the major difference. Plastic bags may break down into smaller bits over time, bit it still exists as small particles, which have ended up in the food stream. You mention putting the plastic bag into a recycle bin, but is it actually recycled? There are apparently big stockpiles of plastic watse becuase we don't do much recycling in NZ, and other countries are now banning NZ plastic waste. This point was mentioned on one news tonight.

 

But the whole thing is that there are alternatives to plastic bags, that look and work similar to plastic, such as those corn starch ones, which can breakdown in compost bins. Supermarkets need to use these. Some NZ companies are using them, so I wonder if they will end up being banned, due to them looking like plastic..

 

 

As bolded, and as stated by you both, its a people issue. If plastic bags went into the red bin, that goes to landfill. Anything that goes into the yellow recycle bin, MUST be recycled. I now recall where I saw that most isn't recycled, it was a news article on TV. I can't recall why, apart that one reason is, many plastics cannot be recycled due to how they were created. Its not a case of just melting everything. So we need to only use plastics that can be melted and reused. Singapore type fines for littering plastic. Im not sure how viable recycling plastic is. If it was more costly, then we need a levy on plastic, so that raw or recycled is the same raw material cost. Provide true recycling centres that melt the plastic, these are funded by the plastic tax. So you say, not another tax??  Technically yes, but if Joe Public is going to cause costs, Joe Public can pay for managing the plastic that he isnt managing, and if the cost of NZ managing plastic responsibly costs a bit more, thats fine, as thats the TRUE cost of using plastic.


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  Reply # 2071643 11-Aug-2018 09:49
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epr:
scuwp:

 

Well intentioned, and I am not against the idea, but it won't make a jot of difference to the environment.    NZ was never the problem when it came to ocean pollution with plastics, and people will just go out any buy plastic bags for bin liners, dog droppings, and everything else these 'multi-use' bags were used for so it will achieve absolutely zilch, other than create 'look at me' headlines for the politicians. 

 

 

 



Except if we take this attitude why ever bother with any measure, just sit back and say it won't make any difference while the world burns.

 

Agree. Its also not China, India, USA's problem either. I am one person. A Chinese, an Indian, an American is also one person. So, its an equal responsibility. That NZ as a small country is not relevant, but an easy way out. Countries dont litter or cause environmental issues, as they are inanimate, its the animate parts that are the problem, the people. 


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  Reply # 2071648 11-Aug-2018 10:03
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danielparker:

Pumpedd:


It seems we need to bring back glass bottles....assume it is possible,



I import literally tons of Beer from all over the world (U.S and E.U) Typically it is either in glass or aluminium cans. Both are technically recyclable.


I would like to think that both are disposed of via recycling in NZ.


I say technically recyclable because I don't know what happens once it is in the recycling bin.


DFP


  



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