Mailbag: Polystyrene ban would be responsible

November 05, 2013

Caring for the environment that our grandchildren will inherit is rational and progressive. ("What will they try to ban next?" Oct 31).

It is not a hassle to carry a washable, nylon bag that can be used for takeout, groceries or clothes shopping. It can easily fit in a purse or cargo pocket.

A heavy canvas tote is seldom necessary since many of the bags available at most drug stores and supermarkets are lightweight and strong. Reusable bags pay for themselves since many stores give a discount for each bag used.


It is also easy to take a reusable, plastic container or wax paper in a purse or small, nylon bag to a restaurant for leftovers.

One can also request an aluminum container or a piece of foil. There are many responsible eateries that provide take-home containers made of degradable or recyclable material.

A number of cities and counties in the country have banned polystyrene packaging, including Berkeley more than a couple decades ago and just recently San Jose.

A ban in Laguna Beach on polystyrene would move the city closer to its zero waste goal and help reduce storm water trash. The polystyrene industry claims that polystyrene is recyclable, but it is difficult and expensive to recycle. And most of it never gets recycled.

Many such ordinances have been introduced to city councils by young people. Some elementary students in Freeport, Maine, got community support, petitioned their town council and won their fight, although a major fast-food chain argued against them.

I'd like to challenge the youth of Orange County to take on the fight against polystyrene.

Linda Newton

Fountain Valley


Plastic bag ban will drive people away

Huntington Beach's ban prohibiting distribution of single-use plastic bags will start Nov. 1. There will be a 10-cent charge for each paper bag issued.

I do not have a problem banning plastic bags. I can live with that and usually take my bags, but the city is charging 10 cents per bag and the stores do not get to keep it. It goes straight to the city.

So I bought a new reusable bag, but what is so sad is that a cashier at a store I shop at proceeded to tell me how people have been coming in and saying they went to the same chain grocer in Costa Mesa where they will double bag paper bags and not charge.

Huntington Beach not only bans the bags but is charging 10 cents for paper bags.

Does anyone on the City Council have common sense?

Betty Cox

Huntington Beach


10-cent fee in H.B. unacceptable

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