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    Plastic Bags

    Myths: Fact or Fiction

    Degrade in Landfill Myth

    The Single Use Myth

    Recycling

    Paper vs. Plastic Bags


    Paper vs. Plastic Studies

    Reusables Greener?

    Types of Bags

    Litter: The Facts
    Public Health

    Canada Update

    Bags Around the World

    The Oil Myth

    Made in Canada
    Ireland's Bag Tax

    Waste Diversion - Diverting Bags from Landfill

    Fiction: Plastic shopping bags are a large part of the waste stream and landfill.

    Fact: No. Plastic bags comprise less than 1% of landfill and the waste stream. ?There are a number of diversion strategies in use by municipalities to divert bags from the waste stream, based on the 3 Rs. ?

    The Facts

    http://www.plastics.ca/Recycling/PlasticBags/TorontoPlasticBags/imgPENqFYhKsT.jpg

    Waste Diversion – Plastic Bags Are a Much Smaller Landfill Problem than Rumoured

    City of Toronto 2010/2011 Waste Audit

     

    Green Bin

    Recycling

    Residual Waste

    Total Generation

    Material Category

    Material Accepted

    All Groups (kg/hhld per yr)

    All Groups (kg/hhld per yr)

    All Groups (kg/hhld per yr)

    All Groups (kg/hhld per yr)

    Percent of total(%)

    Recovery Rate(%)

    Polyethylene Plastic Bags & Film – Packaging Carry Out Bags

    REC

    2.21

    0.77

    2.07

    5.05

    0.6%

    15.3%

    (Source: Single-family Waste Composition Audit, Combined Results for Summer 2010, Winter 2011 and Spring 2011)

    Extending the Life of a Valuable Resource

    The Ontario Picture on Plastic Shopping Bags

    Ontario Ministry of the Environment 2010 Plastic Bag 50% Reduction Task Force  
    Provincial Plastic Carry Out Bag Analysis

    The City of Toronto Picture on Plastic Shopping Bags

    Toronto Plastic Carry Out Bags

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    Impact of a Switch to Paper Bags on Toronto’s Waste System

    Volume & Tonnage Impact

    • A switch to paper will increase both the volume and tonnage of material entering Toronto’s waste stream by seven times because it is much heavier and occupies more space.
    • Kraft paper bags weigh 55 grams, for instance, while plastic bags weight 8 grams. 
    • It is estimated that the current 145 trucks per year needed to manage plastic bags will balloon to 1,183 trucks per year to manage paper bags (Source: Waste Management Industry average of 10 tonne capacity per truck).

    plastic to paper trucks

    • It takes seven trucks to transport 2 million paper bags versus one truck to carry 2 million plastic bags (Source: Bag Manufacturers Producing Plastic & Paper Bags).

     Environmental Impact

    • A switch to paper will generate seven times the emmisions from the additional trucks needed to ship the paper to facilities and manage it in the waste and recycling streams. 
    • In 2006, Taiwan rescinded their ban on plastic bags in their fast food sector. The sector had switched to paper, which led to a “mountain of waste” in the system and greatly increased emissions to manage it.

    Financial Impact

    • A switch to paper bags will increases solid waste management costs significantly.

    wd8

    Banning Plastic Shopping Bags will not Eliminate Plastic Bags from the Waste System 

    Resident Use Kitchen Catcher Plastic Bags

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