Ordinances aimed at reducing litter
PORTLAND, Maine —A new five-cent fee for plastic shopping bags and a ban on polystyrene food containers goes into effect Wednesday in Portland.
While consumers may be aware of the five-cent charge that they will have to pay for plastic grocery bags, it is not the only one related to attempts to reduce what people throw out in the city.
Video: Businesses get ready to make Portland packaging switch
Portland is also banning polystyrene from being used in food containers.
One business has had recyclable options for customers for several years.
“We just want everybody to be conscious and ensure they’re recycling as they go through at the end of the night even our trash bin has mostly recyclables. We try our best to keep everything recyclable. At the end of the day, we hope people do the same,” said Kristina Gallant, store manager of Gelato Fiasco.
Julianna Acheson lugged her groceries in a plastic disposable bag Wednesday.
“I think I need to remember my other bags and I think it’s a really good initiative, to tell you the truth, and I don’t mind paying five cents,” Acheson said.
Supporters say the measures will reduce litter and help the environment.
“I think it’s great,” said Portland shopper Kim Chesterfield. “I spent my winter in the Bay Area and they do it out there. I’ve been using bags for years, so it’s perfect.”
Opponents say they’re an unnecessary burden on consumers and don’t address the real causes of litter.
Freeport has banned foam containers since the early 1990s and Maine prohibits food service vendors from using polystyrene at state-owned facilities.