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Chicago was among the first U.S. cities to ban thin plastic bags in 2015. Baltimore has approved a similar ban beginning next year.
Chicago was among the first U.S. cities to ban thin plastic bags in 2015. Baltimore has approved a similar ban beginning next year. (John J. Kim, Chicago Tribune)

Thank you for drawing attention to the newly-signed Baltimore Bag Ban Bill which will go into effect in 2021 (“Don’t wait for the plastic bag ban. Start living a less plastic life now,” Jan. 14). As a high school student in Baltimore working closely with Blue Water Baltimore to promote the use of reusable bags, I applaud Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young and members of the City Council for joining in the effort to reduce unnecessary plastic waste. Now it’s time for the state of Maryland do the same.

Plastic bags are easily blown into the ocean, where marine life often mistake them for food. Additionally, plastics break down into microplastics, causing widespread pollution that slows the recovery of our Chesapeake Bay. A statewide ban would further reduce the amount of plastic entering our waterways.

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As stated in the article, the true solution to the problem is for people to switch to reusable bags as they are far more environmentally friendly than either plastic or paper bags. While paper bags do not result in the same type of pollution, they are detrimental because of the trees, water and energy required to produce them. I hope that your readers will react to this ban by changing their habits and that the city will ensure all Baltimoreans have access to affordable reusable bags. This will go a long way to protect our environment.

Eva Mammen, Baltimore

The writer is a junior at The Bryn Mawr School.

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