Emily De Vito and WNYT Staff
Updated: October 19, 2020 12:18 PM
Created: October 19, 2020 07:02 AM
New York will be enforcing its plastic bag ban starting Monday.
The ban went into effect on March 1, but the state put it off as the coronavirus outbreak hit New York.
A lawsuit by plastic bag manufacturers also contributed to the pause. They, along with convenience store owners, had argued the state’s plastic bag ban would bankrupt their industries. In August, a judge ruled in favor of the Department of Environmental Conservation.
The DEC estimates New Yorkers use about 23 billion plastic bags annually, each for about 12 minutes. Approximately 85 percent of that ends up in landfills, recycling machines, waterways, and streets.
DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos says the ban on plastic bags means a cleaner future for New York.
“This is a time for us to celebrate a cleaner future for our state, bring your bag. Get ready for the ban on plastic bags, and visit us at dec.ny.gov for your questions and any information,” Seggos said.
The DEC says ideally, a bag should be washable and designed for multiple uses. If you forget to bring a bag with you, many retailers will have reusable bags for sale, or you can pay a $0.05 for a paper bag.
If retailers do distribute the single-use plastic bags, they will be fined.
To hear more about the changes, click on Emily De Vito’s report.
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