(Please Still) Bring Your Own Bags
City will try to persuade businesses to advocate for reusable bags
The Texas Supreme Court's strike-down of Laredo's citywide plastic bag ban last month had a ripple effect on other cities, including Austin, which implemented its own bag ban ordinance in 2013. A city memo released this week explains that while the city can no longer technically ban those types of single-use products, their use is still against the city's Zero Waste goal of reducing the amount of trash we send to our landfills by 90% in the next 20 years. In an effort to keep the city from backsliding, Austin Resource Recovery has stepped up outreach to both large retailers and citizens. About 40% of the retailers surveyed were still working out whether to bring bags back, and a quarter didn't realize the ban was no longer in effect. ARR will report findings to City Council by the end of September, the same month that the department plans to launch a social media campaign to remind Austinites about Zero Waste goals and the virtues of reusable bags.