Long Beach, California is located in Los Angeles County. LA County passed a plastic bag ordinance in November, 2010 and established a model for cities located within the County. See LA County's Plastic Bag Ban.
Large Stores Begins August 1st
Long Beach residents are reminded to "Take a Tote" when shopping at large grocery stores, big box retailers and large drug stores that sell food and perishable items. Beginning August 1, 2011, these stores will no longer provide plastic bags. To view a list of retailers affected, please visit http://www.litterfreelb.org.
"Long Beach is ground zero for plastic bag pollution in southern California. What starts out as litter on the street 40 miles away from Long Beach becomes marine debris half buried on our beaches or floating in a few feet of water off our shores," says Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal. "As a beach city, and particularly one that is located at the base of the Los Angeles River, I hope our ban will inspire upstream cities to think sustainably, and consider reducing their plastic waste as well."
Information on the plastic bag ban is available at http://www.litterfreelb.org. Created by the City of Long Beach, this website provides information on the 10-cent charge per paper bag, "Toting Tips", as well as a host of answers to Frequently Asked Questions. Long Beach residents and consumers are being encouraged to bring their own reusable bags when shopping to help reduce litter and preserve landfill space.
For customers participating in the California Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants, and Children or the Supplemental Food Program, stores are required to provide a free reusable bag or paper bag. Under this ordinance, paper bags can also be purchased from retailers at a cost of 10-cents per bag. The 10-cent fee will be retained by the retailer to assist with costs associated with the Ordinance, as well as educational materials designed to encourage the use of reusable carryout bags.
In May 2011, the Long Beach City Council voted to ban the distribution of plastic carryout bags and approved a 10-cent per bag charge for recyclable paper bags. The plastic bag ban ordinance was designed to:
- Reduce litter in our neighborhoods;
- Reduce plastic debris in our waterways and storm drains;
- Reduce waste transported to landfills; and
- Promote the use of reusable bags.
The first phase of the ordinance goes into effect on August 1, 2011, and applies to large retailers that sell food and perishable items. A complete list of affected stores is available on http://www.litterfreelb.org.
The second phase of the ordinance will go into effect on January 1, 2012 and applies to neighborhood markets and pharmacies, convenience stores, bodegas, sandwich and coffee shops, liquor stores and farmers' markets that sell food and perishable items.