One drizzling day, Aling Saling bought half a kilo of rice. It was put in a brown paper bag which the 40-year-old housewife held at the bottom, all 10 ¬¬¬¬¬¬-fingers at full stretch. But one side of the bag ruptured, too weak to hold even its meagre content. Aling Saling coddled her torn paper bag like a baby to keep what was left of her precious rice from spilling onto the wet pavement. She was torn: should she kneel and pick up her rice one grain at a time or take refuge from the rain and protect what was left? She walked on, her shoulders hunched over her bag. Her experience captured the essence of the continuing debate about the plastic ban, which has resulted in the shift to the use of paper bags.
Our world today is experiencing an environmental dilemma particularly on the numerous solid wastes around us. This is what pushed the government to implement an ordinance that would ban plastic bags and use paper bags instead. But did the government thought of the possible environmental effects that this alternative might bring? Are they positively aware that using paper bags as a replacement for plastic bags could be of much help to mankind and to our environment?
The use of plastic bags had been banned for the reason that it clogs sewers and drainage canals that lead to floods and other environmental damage. But, what people do not know is that it comes with a lot of benefits. First, plastic bags are cheap, reusable and can be recycled even when wet and can hold heavy weights compared to paper bags. Second, they use less energy when it comes to their production and it generates less atmospheric pollution when produced and transported and third, it is more weather friendly compared to paper bags and for it to be made, trees do not need to be cut. These are the main benefits of using plastic bags not only to the environment but also to mankind.