Can weavers of recycled plastic beach totes afford the plastic bag tax?

Will large plastic bags woven from small plastic bags become a nostalgic relic of a bygone Seattle

Will large plastic bags woven from small plastic bags become a nostalgic relic of a bygone Seattle?

Many, many urban crafters — dozens, even — get their start by weaving beach totes from many, many “disposable” plastic bags. We’re proud that plastic bags are a critical part of this dumpster-diving culture that for some reason embraces the supposedly forthcoming post-industrial-collapse of our lifestyle and culture.

What impact would the Seattle bag tax have on these crafty plastic bag re-users?

Some simple math reveals the troubling truth.

A conservative count leads us to estimate that there are approximately 200 bags in this one super-bag.

200 bags * 20 cent fascist tax on bags = 4,000 cents

In other words, this bag would cost a remarkable $40 to manufacture under the Nickels/Conlin bag tax regime — and that’s just raw materials. It doesn’t even begin to include all the other costs & externalized impacts of plastic bags, like the toxins released by plastic factories, the tidepools of plastic bags and other garbage in the world’s oceans, the barrels of oil imported to produce these bags, and so on.

It’s $40 of taxes, and that’s all we care about.

In one stroke, the Seattle bag tax will wipe out an entire emerging cottage industry of big bags woven from other, smaller bags. With economic policies like these, it’s no wonder the middle class is being driven out of Seattle.

****

We in the plastic bag manufacturing  industry are strong supporters of recycling, especially homegrown, small scale, and largely symbolic recycling initiatives like this tote bag that do not require complexities like curbside collection or the notion of “corporate responsibility”.

We believe that the best way to ensure a strong market for recycled bags is by ensuring that large numbers of bags continue to be produced each and every day. This is how we can guarantee that the raw materials of recycling are always there for the taking — by manufacturing, transporting, using and disposing of millions upon millions of bags every year in a city like Seattle.

Will a crafty recycler you love be hurt by the Seattle bag tax? Let the city council know.

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2 responses to this post.

  1. I’m all for the tax! I’m planning to make one of these bags myself simply because we need to repurpose the plastic bags, but as an environmentalist i’m happy if the tax is implemented and we stop using plastic bags!

    Reply

  2. […] Can weavers of recycled plastic beach totes afford the plastic bag tax? […]

    Reply

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