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Coastal Blog — Bag Bans

The Oceans are Full of Plastic - What Now?

December 11 2014

The Oceans are Full of Plastic - What Now?

Ocean Ecosystems Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

Surfrider is very concerned about the problem of plastics in the ocean. Plastics kill or injure large numbers of seabirds, fish and marine mammals through entanglement and ingestion. That's why we developed our Rise Above Plastics program to reduce the use of single-use plastics that end up in the ocean.…

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The Proliferation of the Plastic Bag…BAN

November 04 2014

The Proliferation of the Plastic Bag…BAN

Legal Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Worldwide, nearly two million single-use plastic bags are used each minute. Plastic bags have consistently been reported in the top five most common forms of ocean litter. While these numbers are staggering, there seems to be more than a glimmer of hope as the number of single-use plastic bag bans…

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California’s Bag Ban Victory in Jeopardy

November 03 2014

California’s Bag Ban Victory in Jeopardy

Legal Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Even though the ink has barely dried on SB 270, the state bill to ban single-use plastic bags in California and require a fee on paper bags, the bag industry has pledged to drag the law onto the state ballot in 2016.

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How to Rise Above Plastics: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle

October 21 2014

How to Rise Above Plastics: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Recycle

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam Tsunami Debris

The reality of plastic pollution is that it is happening in every home, office, school and community. It’s plaguing our country. Plastic creates toxic pollution at just about every stage of its existence, from manufacture, to use, to disposal. Considering the facts, it’s no surprise that it’s the most prevalent…

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California Legislature Passes Statewide Bag Ban

August 29 2014

California Legislature Passes Statewide Bag Ban

Legal Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

California’s oceans, waves and beaches are about to become a little cleaner thanks to the efforts of the state legislature this week! SB 270, a bill to ban single-use plastic shopping bags and put a fee on paper bags, has been approved by the California Assembly and Senate.

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Face Petitions, Bag Legislation and Twitter

July 08 2014

Face Petitions, Bag Legislation and Twitter

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

The NYC Chapter has been using Face Petitions to advance a bill for a 10 cent fee on disposable bags. Pictures of faces, a message on a sign about the campaign, and a few key hashtags and handles is all it takes.

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California Senators Promote Bag Ban Bill for 2014

January 31 2014

California Senators Promote Bag Ban Bill for 2014

Legal Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

California State Senators Alex Padilla, Kevin DeLeon and Ricardo Lara recently announced support for legislation to ban single-use plastic bags and place a fee on single-use paper bags in California. These three Senators have partnered with the environmental community, the California Grocers Association and the United Food and Commercial Workers…

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Dolphin vs. Plastic Bag

November 19 2013

Dolphin vs. Plastic Bag

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

While the debate rages on about simple steps to reduce plastic pollution such as a reusable bag ordinance or plastic bag ban, wildlife feels the impacts. On a macro level, plastic litter is photodegrading into microplastics that are turning the ocean into a plastic soup. On a more micro level,…

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California Plastic Bag Recycling Law Fails To Be Effective

October 30 2013

California Plastic Bag Recycling Law Fails To Be Effective

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

A recent exclusive report from the Associated Press highlighted the deficiencies with the California state law passed in 2006 that requires larger food retailers to recycle plastic bags. It's been clear to us that plastic bag recycling does not work and this is more proof. While the plastics industry and…

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Santa Barbara Bans Plastic Bags!

October 15 2013

Santa Barbara Bans Plastic Bags!

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Today was a good day for plastic bag reductions in Santa Barbara! This afternoon the Santa Barbara City Council gave final approval to a citywide plastic checkout bag ban at all food retailers in the city that is scheduled to take effect in six months at larger stores then twelve…

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Santa Barbara and South Lake Tahoe vote to ban the bag!

October 02 2013

Santa Barbara and South Lake Tahoe vote to ban the bag!

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Yesterday was a good day for reducing plastic bag litter as the Santa Barbara City Council and South Lake Tahoe City Council in California both voted to ban plastic checkout bags. The ordinances cover grocery stores and other food retailers while including a ten-cent fee on paper bags as the…

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El Cerrito bans plastic bags AND polystyrene foam foodware!

September 18 2013

El Cerrito bans plastic bags AND polystyrene foam foodware!

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

Last night El Cerrito took a big step towards sustainability and plastic litter reduction by finalizing two ordinances - one to ban plastic checkout bags and another that bans polystyrene food containers at restaurants. California is on the leading edge of plastic litter reduction with over 80 municipalities covered by…

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It’s great to recycle - when convenient.

August 29 2013

It’s great to recycle - when convenient.

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

The plastics industry and major corporations want you to believe that recycling is the holy grail of conservation. If they keep pumping out products and we recycle it all, everyone wins! Right? The truth seems to be a bit more complicated than that. It starts with the realization that the…

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Plastic Bags Kill….

August 05 2013

Plastic Bags Kill….

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

While plastic bags are typically required to have a suffocation warning, unfortunately deaths from suffocating on plastic bags do happen, most often to kids. Just last week a story came out of Hastings, Michigan where a three-year-old boy died after playing with a plastic bag. These are horrible accidents that…

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Don’t Mess with Texas - Kermit Bans Plastic Bags

July 30 2013

Don’t Mess with Texas - Kermit Bans Plastic Bags

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Surfrider Chapters typically focus their plastic reduction efforts in coastal cities and towns because that's where our members are who see the impacts of plastic pollution firsthand and want to take action. You have to start somewhere and as a grassroots organization, that somewhere is our backyard. It's also great…

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More Evidence of Plastic in the Food Web

July 24 2013

More Evidence of Plastic in the Food Web

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans Expanded Polystyrene Foam

In the past few years there have been numerous studies and necropsies documenting ingested plastic in fish species that people eat. The latest study from the University of Hawaii focused on large predatory fish from offshore waters around Hawaii over a six-year period. Ten species were investigated and seven of…

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Keep The Sea Plastic-Free

July 23 2013

Keep The Sea Plastic-Free

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

It's summertime and the beaches are packed with people - and their stuff. On the way to the water today with surfboard in hand I came across a ziplock bag filled with cookies along the tide line. I'm not sure which family it belonged to so I just tossed it…

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It’s Official, LA Mayor Signs Plastic Bag Bag Into Law!

June 26 2013

It’s Official, LA Mayor Signs Plastic Bag Bag Into Law!

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa cemented his stellar environmental record by signing the plastic checkout bag ban into law. City Council has been working on the issue for ten years and finally passed an ordinance this year that will make LA the largest city in the U.S. to take meaningful…

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Job Killer or Job Creator?

June 20 2013

Job Killer or Job Creator?

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

People don't make plastic bags, machines do. I know that it takes people to run and maintain the machines then package the bags to be shipped but it is a highly automated process. On the other hand, people do make reusable bags. Quality reusable bags are stitched one at a…

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Surfrider Activists Stand Up To Fight Plastic Pollution in LA and Chicago

June 19 2013

Surfrider Activists Stand Up To Fight Plastic Pollution in LA and Chicago

Rise Above Plastics Bag Bans

Tuesday was a big day for plastic bag reductions in two of the largest U.S. cities, Los Angeles and Chicago. The City of LA is very close to finalizing a plastic checkout bag ban they have been discussing for ten years while there are positive signs out of Chicago as…

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