NJ Set to Enact Plastic Ban and 10 cent Paper Bag Fee Tax

Editorial, Opinion

December 5, 2019

By: Dennis Symons, Jr.

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–State Senators Bob Smith and Linda Greenstein have proposed S2776 that bans several plastic items and adds a 10 cent fee tax to paper bags that are the alternatives to plastic.

The intent of the legislation by enacting a “ban” of items is the way to go but any “tax” should be eliminated from bill.

If plastic is really harming the environment lets ban it rather than tax it. Lets not tax the alternatives such as “paper” bags since they break down in the environment, can be recycled and composted and do not cause harm like plastic.

Lets make this bill about the “environment” and not about the money and fee taxes by eliminating the tax language on paper bags in the bill.

I belong to an organic CSA and for the past couple of years they have provided “Compostable” faux plastic bags as an alternative to regular vegetable bags. I tried to compost the bags in the summer of 2018 and they did not break down well and in the spring of 2019 I found them in the garden wrapped around the tines of the rotor tiller.

In the summer of 2019 the CSA ran out of regular plastic vegetable bags and the only choice was to use the compost bags so when I returned home I proceeded to start an experiment to see how long it would take to break down the “compostable” bag.

Results of the experiment is that paper bags break down and the faux plastic also breaks down but takes a little longer than paper to break down. Paper bag will also break down in the environment in a similar way not causing harm to the environment like plastic bags do:

Video final results after 3 months: November 21, 2019:

7 Weeks October 7, 2019

10 Day Compost Update, August 30, 2019:

Start of composting experiment August 20, 2019:

Composting video on how to compost:

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