Letters to the Editor: Why won’t California just kill the plastic grocery bag already?

A stylized image of a plastic bag hanging from a wire
California banned single-use plastic grocery bags nine years ago, but the law has been challenged and contains loopholes.
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: In 1981, on my first visit to Munich, disposable shopping bags were not offered in grocery stores. Everyone brought their own twine-mesh bags. I carried this practice home to the United States and have used my own cloth bags ever since. (“Does California need another plastic bag ban? It seems so,” editorial, Sept. 5)

Now, nine years after California “banned” single-use plastic grocery bags, at the self-checkout aisle at Ralphs there is always an attendant pushing thicker plastic bags on us. I thought they were not supposed to offer these unless we asked and agreed to pay for them.

There is clearly little enforcement.

Michael Krubiner, Valley Village



To the editor: Your editorial about plastic bags makes me wonder why no one is objecting to the recycling tax on plastic bottles and aluminum cans.

We must pay 5 cents per item, with the understanding that the money will be refunded if the bottles and cans are returned to a recycling center. Using internet sources, I have driven around my neighborhood looking for these “centers,” and have found them either nonexistent or out of business.

Many addresses are grocery stores, where employees laugh at me for suggesting a refund.

In my opinion, this amounts to unfair taxation. If we’re worried about plastic, let’s make laws that are enforceable.

Davida Kristy, Playa Vista


To the editor: I cannot agree with you more about the need to reexamine and expand the plastic bag ban to stop their tangible threat to our environment. I use reusable cloth bags for grocery shopping and even reusable mesh bags for fresh produce.

However, while my wife and I enjoy our morning breakfast ritual, reading and discussing the L.A. Times delivered to our house, we can’t help feeling disappointed upon seeing the newspaper in our driveway neatly packaged in one of those abhorrent plastic bags.


Please do what you say.

Art Olson, Del Mar