Reusing Your Plastic Bags
Saving Money, And The Earth, One Bag At A Time.
With the current economic problems, more people are interested in saving money and recycling. Businesses are always interested in keeping the customers they have and getting new ones.
The cost of fuel has been big in the news for years but, when compared to plastics, it’s a small percentage of petrochemical use. Saving on the use of petrochemicals for making plastics can extend the timeframe before peak oil and lower the price of fuels.
A few years ago, I had another person helping me paint the exterior of our home that I’d just finished building. The home is an alternative strawbale of my own engineering design. The person helping me had never seen or worked on a strawbale home before, and we were talking about energy savings and saving money in general. My helper said that a recent article they’d read had talked about how some people who were even taking their bags back to grocery stores, as opposed to getting new ones every time they went through the checkout stand. My helper scoffed at the idea and said how ridiculous it was. The conversation on that topic ended when I said we’d recycled our bags for years.
Most grocery stores offer a two cent per bag discount if you bring in your bags. You can do that in a variety of ways. One is by taking the old plastic bags back and another is using cloth bags, which can often be purchased at the store. Usually, grocers will sell cloth bags with their advertising on them at their cost, which is cheaper than an equivalent type bag can be purchased elsewhere. By doing that, the grocer gets their investment back and advertisement as well. If your grocer doesn’t have a program of that type, tell them about the advertising value and mention that you take your bags everywhere, including their competitor’s store.
If you don’t want to spend the money on cloth bags, reuse your old plastic ones. Plastic bags aren’t as durable as cloth and it’s a good practice to double bag when using a plastic bag more than once or twice.
We’ve found cloth bags to be a good investment. Most of our bags are almost twenty years old. If we save two cents a bag and buy ten bags of groceries, and do that five times a month, we’ve saved a dollar a month. That doesn’t sound like much but our cloth bags paid for themselves the first year, with the last eighteen plus years being pure savings.
Tying the bags off keeps the goods inside from spilling all over the trunk on the way home. But, tying them off presents another problem. Getting them untied, especially the plastic bags, can be difficult if not impossible. Most people consider it not worth the effort and rip them apart. There’s a simple answer to that problem. Since a picture is worth a thousand words, I have a brief slide show that explains the process. Once the bags are tied in the manner I show in the pictures, they untie easily and can be used over and over.
You can access the “Untie My Bag” slide show, plus other articles and slide shows, by going to www.newliferoadmap.com, selecting Larry’s Slide Shows and following the instructions on the landing page. It’s free, easy, quick, can save you money and help the environment.
Tags: Reuse , Recycle , Environment , Eco
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