Pittsburgh City Council Approves Plastic Bag Ban – CBS Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Pittsburgh City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday to ban plastic bags.

The ban on single-use plastic bags takes effect in exactly one year in all businesses in the city. There are a few exceptions, such as trash bags and animal waste bags.

READ MORE: Bill would ban single-use plastic bags in Pittsburgh

Customers will need to bring their own bags or pay 10 cents for a paper bag in stores. Restaurants will also have to switch to paper bags for takeout orders.

Paper bags are free for those with an EBT card or Special Supplemental Nutrition Program vouchers for women, infants and children.

Councilor Erika Strassburger introduced the bill last year to help clear pollution and litter.

“On average, plastic bags are used for 12 minutes and then they are gone forever. There are so many reasons (to ban plastic bags) for our quality of life and our neighborhoods, for our public health, and for future generations to be able to do something to clean up our neighborhoods and just make Pittsburgh a better place. where to live,” Strassburger said last week when the bill left committee.

Strassburger said the bill doesn’t come into effect for a year, so now is the time to educate residents and business owners.

READ MORE: Pittsburgh plastic bag ban progresses

“I don’t mind the paper that much,” Pittsburgh resident Karrin Rutledge said Tuesday. “The convenience of plastic is going to be hard to get rid of. They’re durable, they hold a lot of weight.

Maggie Olin of Mt. Washington said, “I’m pretty much okay with that. It will be weird. I reuse plastic bags for trash cans, so that’s the only thing that will be weird not having them on hand.

But for local businesses, especially those packing a ton of takeout orders, the plastic bag ban has some holes. The owner of Sultan Doner Gyro in downtown Pittsburgh said he had already started switching to paper products and found some problems.

“Due to supply chain issues, it’s a bit expensive,” Sinan Camozu said.

The general manager of Redbeard’s Bar and Grill said he had thousands of dollars worth of monogrammed plastic bags which he now had to use or suffer a loss. He believes the move will be positive for the environment, but said the issue is much bigger than the bags.

“All the chickens are plastic, any of my greens,” Brent Kightlinger said. “Each head of lettuce is wrapped in plastic.”

“We are totally for the environment,” added the managing director. “I want to save all the turtles. I’m just trying to think in a more holistic way and do it much more efficiently.

Bryce K. Locke