Massachusetts

Ban the Bag, Lynn!

Victory | April 09 2019

Plastic Pollution

The MA Chapter supported a single-use bag mitigation effort in Lynn, Massachusetts.

A Surfrider MA member worked on a bag law in Lynn along with other local organizations, after a group of local teens presented the idea to the Board.

The cluster of Lynn/Revere/Chelsea have very strong local ties and will tend to follow each other, and the Chapter was at the ready to help ensure a good policy passed!

On April 9, 2019, the Lynn Board of Health voted unanimously to pass the bag ban, which goes into effect on September 1, 2019. The law bans plastic film bags under 4 mils and allows retailers to provide recycled paper bags for free or "reusable bags" to be sold. Reusable bags are defined in the law as: 

Reusable bag means a bag that is specifically designed and manufactured for multiple reuse and is either polyester, polypropylene, cotton or other durable material, and meets the following requirements:

1. Has a minimum lifetime capability of 125 or more uses carrying 22 or more pounds; and

2. Is machine washable or is made of a material that can be cleaned or disinfected 125 times.

3. Has a thickness of greater than four mil. 

While the ideal is to disallow any single-use bags for free, and we'd love to see the Lynn law amended to mandate a charge on paper bags, we were glad to see thick plastic film bags allowed for a fee, and are optimistic that our state bag ban campaign will be successful this year, mandating the proper fee structure across the state.

FMI contact campaigns@ma.surfrider.org.

Plastic Pollution

Rise Above Plastics is designed to eliminate the impacts of plastics in the marine environment by raising awareness about the dangers of plastic pollution and by advocating for a reduction of single-use plastics and the recycling of all plastics.

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