Vexed Bermoothes

Blustery Opinions From Bermuda

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Bag Tax

April 26th, 2013 · No Comments · Development

Local charities are lobbying Government to institute a “bag tax” of 25 cents per bag to encourage shoppers to adopt reusable bags and reduce waste.

Sounds nice and green doesn’t it?  I like do-gooders and applaud their passion and community efforts.  But I can’t resist acting as devil’s advocate on this one:

  1. Umm, many people reuse plastic bags.  So now they will have to buy plastic bags.  The bags are still there.
  2. This is a tax. It’s nice to think that you can tax people into living or acting better;  it rarely works out that way.
  3. It will increase the cost of living and reduce convenience for shoppers.  If I am buying an expensive or cumbersome item, I have the right to get a darn bag!  The economy sucks, and a bag tax hits people who are supporting local business!  And, those shoppers will take their anger out on retailers … not MPs.
  4. Our Tynes Bay incinerator depends on having a certain minimum flow of quality combustibles – has anyone considered the impact on Tynes Bay of removing bags from the trash stream?
  5. Remember that Tynes Bay is also an energy co-generation facility.  The power produced by those burning bags replaces burning sulphur-laden oil brought here from Venezuela.  Has anyone considered the cost/environmental tradeoff?
  6. They propose enhancing the “no bag” effort by giving bags to tourists?  Seriously?

I vote no on the bag tax.  I do however support more environmental education and encourage the more effective operation of Bermuda’s recycling efforts.

LOL, I do my thing helping out the KBB cleanups … and by my unscientific analysis of roadside trash, there would be more impact by putting a bottle refund on Elephants.

The Royal Gazette supports the bag tax.  Remember dear editor, today they came for my shopping bag.  Tomorrow they’ll come for my newspaper.

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