The impact brought by plastic bag ban in seattle on the economy and environment

Economic point of view

Economic effect of Los angelas county bag ban by national center for policy analysis impacts on

  • sales, Incorporated stores experienced an increase in sales of 3.4 percent.
    However, unincorporated stores reported a decline in sales of –3.3 percent.
  • Impact on Retail Employment. stores in the unincorporated areas all reported that the number of individuals they employed dropped after the bag ban — by an average of 10.4 percent.
  • Impact on Bag Purchases.


“greater impact on American manufacturing, and the real environmental ramifications of such policies.”
“most thin-film plastic bags are made in the United States, and the plastics manufacturing industry employs more than 30,000 people directly and many more indirectly.” In contrast, “most reusable bags are imported.”

Environmental point of view

PLASTIC BAGS: HAZARDS AND MITIGATION By Brittany Turner and Jessica Sutton pros:

  • plastic bags are non-biodegradable (take up to 100 years before any decomposition takes place)
  • easily be blown away by the wind, The state of California spends on average twenty-four million dollars transporting plastic bags to the landfills where they will continue to remain for decades
  • Plastic bags can block water ways especially the gutter system as well as the storm drains. Overflows and larger scale floods become a common phenomenon as a result of these blockages.


  • harm the forest ecosystem
  • The availability of such a large amount of wood to manufacture enough paper bags for the whole of the American population would be difficult. They also argue that trees are also an integral part in reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, and it is for this reason that cutting of these trees should be kept at a minimum.
  • The pollution of the marine environment by plastic debris: a review

This has been shown by the increasing numbers of plastic bags that are found along the beaches. They occupy the top surface of water due to their lightness. The effect of this occupation is the depletion of the marine life of oxygen. This means that the living organisms that are living in that part of the ocean do not have enough oxygen since the only supply of oxygen available to them is blocked by the plastic bags. It has been found that plastic bags account for a 10 percent of the total debris that is usually washed in the American shoreline Marine debris accumulation in the nearshore marine habitat of the endangered Hawaiian monk seal, Monachus schauinslandi1999–2001
The death of these seal plants, for example the sea grass, means that fish and other organisms that depend on these sea plants for food are left with nothing to eat and they eventually die (Boland and Donohue, 1386) other resources

The Plastic Bag Ban: A Battle of Socio-Economic Policy

  • Seattle Bans Plastic Bags, and Sets a Charge for Paper
  • The Economic Effect of Plastic Bag Bans by NCPA
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