We don’t have to protect the environment, the Second Coming is at hand. – James Watt
Well first of all, I think I better clear up the heading of this blog. According to the “urban dictionary” a ‘WhoreBag’ has many definitions, many of which are similar in meaning. A new definition is needed however: a more literal meaning. Some of the people who shop at our retail outlets and supermarkets should readily inherit the title. That is, someone that overindulges and overuses the right to take as many plastic bags as they desire. No I am not talking about general plastic bag usage. When going shopping at your local supermarket it is understandable to be given plastic bags to package all of your items. Not doing so is in fact cumbersome in taking the items out of the trolley-in the car-out of the car (and everyone should respect the few that actually do this). However to demand multiple plastic bags is just disgusting. Working in retail, I see first hand the general abuse many selfish and greedy customers undertake. They demand numerous plastic bags for one reason or another (to place on their bins is one excuse)…. But why abuse this? Aren’t the 30 bags that covered your shopping enough? Does a pack of condoms really need a plastic bag? Does a stick of gum? Hell no.
So thankfully, change is being encouraged. Now it is looked at in a negative manner whenever someone asks for 39 plastic shopping bags in case their other 47 plastic bags that you gave them break, tear or biodegrade from the harsh weather conditions (because Australia has experienced so much rain in the past 10 years). But does that stop people from wanting more? Of course not. Ignorance is probably bliss (yes yes cliche cliche, so sue me!) and many are too stubborn to give a damn about what others think. The only solution is of course hitting them where it hurts…. The hip pocket. In Ireland there has been a 90% reduction in plastic bag usage. Why? Every bag that a customer uses is charged at 15 euro cents (recently increased to 22 cents). Wait did you say a 90% reduction?! Can you believe that? It’s a miracle!
So for example: from 1 billion bags being used and taken by customers, now only 100 million bags are being used. Still sounds like a lot of bags but at only 10% of the original amount, it is a great improvement. What’s funny is that this began in the year 2002. Yup that’s right 6 bloody years ago, when words such as carbon footprint didn’t exist, oil was hovering around a dollar a liter, and Greenpeace was looked at as a bunch of hippies (well some things don’t change I suppose). China decided to introduce the ban of giving away shopping bags for free sometime in June! Well done. Australia decided to implement the ban of free bags sometime this year (next year?). I suppose everyone is different in how quick they do things. We should all be thankful that some countries are even deciding to take some measures.
a). Bags break!
b). I need to have more bags to place on my bins
c). Customer service sucks…. I am taking my revenge on having as much shopping bags possible
a). If the checkout operator is incompetent enough to allow bags to break (i.e. by placing 54 million items in one bag), then tell him so and advise him to not put so much in them. Understandably there are a lot of jackass workers at some retail stores but most have a brain with a minimal amount of neural connections, hence making them able to listen to the customer’s common sense.
b). You can always buy the ones they sell at Safeway or Coles? But they cost money… So I understand where you’re coming from. What will you do when the world wide levy is introduced? Make your own bags?
c). Write a complaint… Better yet, speak to the manager/head manager about the concern. They will more often than not do something about it. If nothing is done, take the mater further and if all else fails, shop somewhere else. Incompetent work areas need to suffer.