Plastic Bags Are The Enemy Of The Environment

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Plastic Bags: The Enemy of the Environment Plastic is a commodity that people use everyday which makes daily life easier and safer. People take pills, use cell phones, and wear bike helmets in addition to a plethora of other activities, but tend to forget that one common element in all of them is the use of plastic. One of the main sources of plastic that has been polluting the environment over the last few decades are plastic bags. Plastic bags can be found in nearly every store to hold groceries, accessories, or toys. While plastic bags may provide convenience for customers, there is an overwhelming concern about the effect of them on the health and safety of people, marine life, and the surrounding environment. Since stores are the culprit of a vast majority of the plastic bag pollution, a 5-cent charge for each plastic bag used should be implemented across the country in an effort to decrease the amount of bags used by all customers like it has been in Suffolk County, Long Island. Materials that are biodegradable have the ability to decompose by bacteria or other living organisms found in the environment. A majority of plastic is made of monomers such as ethylene and propylene which are not biodegradable (Geyer et al.). Plastic bags are not biodegradable which means that upon their disposal they are either left in landfills or end up along shorelines of the ocean. A process known as photodegradation can be used to break down plastic bags, but this process takes a very

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