Not for the first time The Listener has produced a cover story backed by lengthy articles on the evils of plastic. Similarly the Dominion-Post periodically runs such articles.

What do they have in common? Both publications are delivered to subscribers in plastic wrapping.


Modern Day Journo’s can’t even grasp the concept of irony ….

Tonnes of paper and cardboard trucking to land fills in place of a kilo of plastic. Single use paper bags that split on first use replacing multiple use plastic.

Posturing lunacy.

I do miss the plastic supermarket bags that we kept and re-used. Now I have to buy plastic bags from the supermarket shelves.
What happened about the pesky little fruit stickers? They were promised by Arden to be goners a year or so ago but we still have them.
How many 100’s of thousands of those cheap disposable masks end up in the landfill now?

My aging mum reminds me of when she was newly married and before plastic was widely used (1950’s) the local baker used to deliver loafs of unwrapped fresh bread tucked under his arm. ‘In the summer you could see the sweat in his armpits.’ I’ve heard her tell this to her great grandchildren and remind them that plastic isn’t all bad.

I remember a few years back finding out to my surprise, in an online debate, that the overall ecological damage caused during the production of paper bags (& presumably cardboard?) was greater than that of plastic bags.


Nevertheless, with the sheer amount of plastic bags previoysly ending up in our waterways & surrounding coastal seas, causing death to marine animals thru choking, I’ve accepted that getting rid of these has probably been for the best.

Most of the ocean plastic is micro fibres from laundering synthetic clothes. And most of the plastic bags in the ocean come from countries in Asia, South America and Africa that have no effective waste collection systems.

The main impact of banning the plastic bags has surely been to benefit the big supermarkets by reducing their costs, getting customers to recycle their cardboard boxes for them and diverting customers from local small shops because frequent shopping is so inconvenient when you need to bring and carry an unpredictable number of awkward carry bags around the shop. I’d be very surprised if the impact on plastic pollution was detectable, certainly not in the ocean.

Alan, we are good personal friends. I’ve already told you before that the incredible amount of plastic shopping bag pollution of the water, foliage, & banks of the significantly-sized stream that I live right next to in Tawa has improved out of sight since plastic shopping bags were banned.

Yes, I too find it a right bloody bind to have to carry shooping bags around in my car or on my person if I want to go anywhere & purchase something that will require bagging.

Where you currently live possibly does not have a significantly-sized population, or there may be few waterways passing thru town. Where I live, this magnifient stream was absolutely choking with plastic shopping bags for years. How they all got in there, God knows.

But they were a significant pollution of the natural environment problem here. Maybe it’s to do with Wellington’s windiness? And a significant number of them were travellng downstream – especially after heavy rain – & straight out into the Paremata & Porirua harbours.

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