Plastic bag ordinances have created a large following in California cities.

After reporting the ban of plastic bags in the city of Palo Alto on PublicCEO, other cities have expressed sentiments on the subject. 

Avalon City Councilman Scott Nelson said the city would love to jump on board banning plastic bags. “We need help in getting reusable bags to give out to our customers.”

The city is open to suggestions for low-cost options to address the city’s need for reusable bags that would allow Avalon to become more environmentally friendly.

Willits City Councilwoman Holly Madrigil said the City Council, as well as the County of Mendocino, looked into banning plastic bags last year but were dissuaded by strong opposition and threats of litigation by the plastic bag lobby. 

Madrigil discussed the lawsuit filed against Oakland and San Francisco by a Sacramento-based plastic manufacturer, called The Coalition to Support Plastic Bag Recycling and claimed, “I think the concern of litigation is why more cities in California are not following suit.”

Some have suggested that there is enough plastic that it would be possible to simply
re-manufacture from recycled plastics.

In addition to the ban of plastic bags, the city of Palo Alto has launched the BYOBag Campaign, aimed to help shoppers remember to use their reusable bags whenever they shop.

The Zero Waste Program hopes to bring reusable bag use to 30 percent by February 2010. According to the Palo Alto press release, reusable bag use has risen from 9 to18 percent.

“Tools for shoppers include a handy Reminder Kit complete with a decal for their car, sticky notes and signs, and a shopping list magnet for their refrigerator,” according to the Palo Alto press release.

Participating stores are issuing bag credits for reusable bag use, installing shopping cart corral store signs, hanging banners and distributing the reminder kits for shoppers.

“Make it a Habit and Grab It.”

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From reducing air travelers’ carbon footprint, Reusable bag programs to combat non-biodegradable plastic, to exploring Solar Powered Trash Compactors, local cities and counties are taking strides to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and become environmentally friendly.

Louis Dettorre can be reached at