Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Paper or plastic? The answer the world awaited!

I get so sick of this damned question I could almost vote Republican.

Paper or plastic?

I've been choosing plastic lately because I line my smaller wastebaskets with them, but it's a lazy rationale. It only delays the entry of these bags into the environment, where they begin their second, thousand year life, as environmental disasters. They kill land and ocean going creatures by the hundreds of thousands annually.

Paper is no better, environmentally speaking, and not only because we cut down over 14 million trees each year to produce them, but also because they generate huge amounts of pollution in the air and water from both production and recycling.

AlterNet's Tara Lohan has a great article on the environmental and economic impact of these ubiquitous killers, here. Fortunately for my sanity, she has also answered the initial question--paper or plastic?

And the answer is--------neither!

The best kind of bag is a reusable one made of cloth. Properly cared for, they will last for years, and I know (because I checked) that they are easily purchased at relatively low cost. Just use those tubes on the internets to find a good supplier.

I can't let this go without a political point-- We should all jump on the anti-bag bandwagon because they have the capacity to end life as we know it, just more slowly than Bush is sure to if we don't also jump on the anti-Bush bandwagon.

I'm going to resist any comments about bagging Bush.

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