Coronavirus is why plastic bag ban should go

Albuquerque City Councilor Pat Davis’s recent comments on expanding the city’s ban on plastic bags were “out of touch,” especially in this time of coronavirus.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, major retailers are rightly emphasizing public safety above environmental concerns. Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks are just two of the largest companies that have disallowed the use of reusable cups due to health concerns. And the problem with reusable cloth bags preferred by Davis and other opponents of plastic bags is real.

A 2018 report from Loma Linda University was based on an experiment in which researchers purposely “contaminated” a reusable bag with a harmless form of a virus. A single shopper then went through a typical grocery store, and the research team tracked the spread of the virus. Quoting directly from the executive summary of the report, “The data show that MS2 spread to all surfaces touched by the shopper; the highest concentration occurred on the shopper’s hands, the checkout stand, and the clerk’s hands.”

Read the full opinion piece in the Albuquerque Journal.