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Banning plastic bags should only be the start

Banning plastic bags should only be the start
Cashier Brianna Pollock bags groceries at Eddie's Market in Charles Village Wed., July 31, 2019. (Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun)

I’m aware of the many times a plastic bag ban has come before City Council. I know because I fought it all the way. But that was then, this is now (“Baltimore bag ban would help kick plastic problem," Aug. 22). Perhaps I should do penance, but I did not know about the harm plastic is doing to the environment. It’s not just watching plastic bags “rolling down streets like tumbleweed, or twisting up in tree branches,” it’s the realization of what this man-made product is doing to our oceans that changed my mind.

Presently new continents of plastic and other waste are developing in the Atlantic and Pacific, some the size of Oregon and Oklahoma. A recent 60 Minutes episode explored this horror. And plastic along with related refuse does not biodegrade. Today’s castoffs could be around for centuries — killing marine life and polluting the shores. Frankly, I’m scared.

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This ban should include more than plastic bags, it must be a worldwide effort to eliminate these materials altogether. With online shopping and shipping, plastic is the given. Perishables are packed in bubble wrap, while Styrofoam popcorn cushions fragile items. This too should be eliminated.

The “human age” is doing irreparable damage to the planet. So before we begin building colonies on the Moon, or sending a human to Mars, we must take care of our “beautiful blue marble floating in space!”

Rosalind Nester Heid, Baltimore

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