San Rafael, California, March 3, 2014 (PBBR) - The City Council of the city of San Rafael, California adopted an ordinance regulating single-use carryout bags at the Council's regular meeting today.
The ordinance prohibits merchants from providing single-use plastic bags to customers and places a mandatory ten cents charge on recyclable paper bags that are provided to the customer.
According to the environmental organization, Environment California, San Rafael becomes the 100th community in California to place a ban on plastic bags.
“This important step forward for San Rafael shows yet again that we can achieve lasting victories for ocean and environmental health,” said Nathan Weaver with Environment California. “The experience of 100 communities and 1 in 3 Californians shows that banning plastic bags is the right choice to protect our rivers, beaches, and the Pacific Ocean. I applaud our local governments for their leadership on this issue.”
Weaver further stated that nearly 1 in 3 Californians now live somewhere with a plastic bag ban.
San Rafael, located in Marin County, has been laying the groundwork for a plastic bag ban for several years. Working with the county of Marin, along with five other Marin County towns, San Rafael wanted to enact a plastic bag ordinance that could be utilized by the other jurisdictions as well.
The resulting ordinance will affect approximately 45 San Rafael businesses along with public events held in the city. Retailers and event vendors are required to promote reusable bags through signage and verbal communications.
The ordinance allows the City Council by resolution to raise the ten cents charge on paper bags to twenty-five cents after one year.
Cover photo: Saint Rafael Church, San Rafael, CA. Licensed by Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0)