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Girl Scout Wants Plastic Bags Removed from South Pas Retailers

The South Pasadena High School student addressed City Council Wednesday night, and asked that members consider rewarding stores that do away with plastic.

Anneliese Sloss wants people to think about the permanency of plastic.

In fact, the South Pasadena High School student is so passionate about plastics pollution that she's taken her concern to the City Council: Sloss asked council members Wednesday night to consider rewarding South Pas stores that don't use plastic bags.

"It's an ethical problem and a human health problem,'' said Sloss, a Girl Scout who is working toward her Gold Award. "Twenty-five percent of plastics thrown away are unaccounted for and end up in one of five ocean gyres,'' she said, noting a gyre are areas of slow spiraling water with low winds. 

Sloss' project intends to make youth aware of the pollution situation, as well as look for ways to make her city more sustainable. She has created children's coloring books highlighting the problem, and has also made presentations to elementary schools, such as a recent visit to the fourth graders at Marengo. 

"Single-use plastics are such a bad problem,'' she said, asking council members if they could encourage stores to make the switch from plastic to paper bags by annually or biannually giving commendations to them. That way, Sloss said, employers could hang the certificates in the window as a matter of pride.

"So it becomes something they want to do rather than something they're forced to do,'' she said.

Councilman Michael Caccioti said he thought it was a great idea, but encouraged Sloss to pitch her idea to the Natural Resources and Environmental Commission. The commission members would then talk about the topic, take public input on the matter and potentially bring a measure before the council.  

Wearing her Girl Scout uniform, awash in badges, the teen said she would do just that. 

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S. Ray February 10, 2013 at 08:54 PM
The point that I am trying to assert is that the current evidence is that after plastic grocery bags are banned, "hospital emergency room admissions from food borne illness spiked as did related deaths by a similar amount." The authors of two studies have now looked at the data and concluded that there is a cause and effect relationship. No one has suggested that this is not true. It is a simple and apparently uncontroverted fact that the presence of E. coli bacteria increases in food bags that are not washed after each use, and that human nature being what it is, those bags rarely are. Scientists have now looked at the data and concluded that there is therefore a cause and effect relationship between increases in food borne illnesses and deaths and banning plastic bags, particularly since the data show that where other counties and cities ban the bags, the increases in hospital visits and deaths from food borne illness follow. No other cause has been suggested. It's impossible to show that a particular person contracted a food borne illness from a particular cause simply due to the nature of the illness, but it is equally impossible to ignore the apparent cause and effect relationship, given all the evidence.
spidra February 11, 2013 at 01:04 AM
"It's impossible to show that a particular person contracted a food borne illness from a particular cause simply due to the nature of the illness" It's actually quite possible to demonstrate that a particular person contracted food-borne illness from a particular cause. The CDC does it all the time. http://www.cdc.gov/outbreaknet/
S. Ray February 11, 2013 at 04:03 PM
"It's actually quite possible to demonstrate that a particular person contracted food-borne illness from a particular cause. The CDC does it all the time." Not exactly true, spidra. For example, whenever these outbreaks of food borne illness occur, not everyone who comes into contact with the source of the contamination gets ill. It all depends on a variety of factors, including their overall health and constitution. What the CDC does is look for sources of food borne illness, like contaminated reusable grocery bags, and then queries whether a person who is ill came into contact with the source of contamination, like eating food that was transported in the contaminated bag. From that, they deduce a cause and effect relationship. They cannot, for a fact, prove that the source of the illness was the contaminated bag, however, instead of some other contact that the person may have had with another contamination source. All that they can do is look at possible sources and deduce a cause/effect. This is precisely what the authors of the two studies have done, and it is what you attack. Yet it passes the test of good science, for the CDC, for the University of Arizona and the Loma Linda University School of Public Health, and for the Social Science Research Network.
Zelda Fish February 17, 2013 at 08:49 AM
I refuse to shop where plastic bags aren't offered. Why because too often I go in for few items and end up with a cart. More importantly it's my choice and I'm sick of people taking choices away due to THEIR beliefs. There are many people using the bags to pick up their dog poop and they won't be buying bags. I'd rather see a bag than step in poop. I refuse to shop where bags aren't offered w/o cost. I have my own cloth bags but it's not always enough or practical. I don't want meat in a cloth bag. I don't want paper bags as it's a great way to bring roach eggs home. How about we start teaching our children to be responsible people and not to be such liberals that they seem to find the need to control everyone else and their behavior. How about forcing responsibility onto each person's own back instead of controlling everyone because a few people are idiots. You don't control or change the masses for a few. That seems to be what we are doing all the time. How about calling out the few and correcting their behavior rather than lump us as all irresponsible. I resent it.
spidra March 14, 2013 at 08:32 AM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/08/spain-sperm-whale-death-swallowed-plastic "The plastic had eventually blocked the animal's stomach and killed it, according to researchers from the Doñana national park research centre in Andalusia.....In all the whale's stomach contained two dozen pieces of transparent plastic, some plastic bags, nine metres of rope, two stretches of hosepipe, two small flower pots and a plastic spray canister."

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