Reusable Bag Ordinance expansion planned
StopWaste is planning an expansion of the reusable bag ordinance to include all retail stores and restaurants. The current ordinance, which went into effect January 2013, applies to the 1,300 grocery and liquor stores in Alameda County that traditionally distribute a high volume of single-use bags. Since the ordinance began, the amount of plastic bags used in Alameda County has reduced by two-thirds. The Waste Management Authority (WMA) Board is expected to vote on an expanded ordinance in September. If approved, 14,000 total stores and restaurants would be added to the ordinance. The ordinance encourages the use of reusable bags to prevent waste from happening in the first place, as well as reducing litter and keeping plastic bags out of local waterways.