Skip to main content

Advertisement

Advertisement

Find biodegradable alternatives, but we still need disposable bags

I agree with Ms Caslin Lee’s position that “Free plastic bags from supermarkets do not go to waste” (Oct 5), although these bags are not free but are factored into the total purchase cost as part of customer service.

I agree with Ms Caslin Lee’s position that “Free plastic bags from supermarkets do not go to waste” (Oct 5), although these bags are not free but are factored into the total purchase cost as part of customer service.

In Singapore, most households reuse plastic bags to bag refuse, which helps to avoid spillage, odour and pest infestation. The waste, including used plastic bags, is disposed of safely at incineration plants and does not pose an environmental problem.

Thus, the Singapore Environment Council (SEC) should enlighten us on the extent of the environmental issues caused by the use of plastic bags here. (“An idea to charge for plastic bags on weekends”; Oct 1)

It was suggested that second-hand reusable bags be placed near cashier counters for shoppers who forget to bring their own bags. I would be uncomfortable to use such bags without knowing how they were used before.

While a carrier bag may look clean, there is always the risk that germs may spread to ready-to-eat food.

I am also disturbed by the SEC’s idea of letting supermarkets profit by charging for plastic bags on weekends. Surely there are better ways to manage plastic bag usage.

For example, retailers and supermarkets should be encouraged to use biodegradable plastic bags and, if possible or suitable, recycled or recyclable paper or cloth bags.

In this way, plastic bags that do not land up in incineration plants are at least decomposable. Such bags are being used in megastores such as Tesco and Aeon in Malaysia.

Plastic bags serve a purpose in daily life. We should not discourage their usage in the name of the environment while causing inconvenience to ourselves.

Read more of the latest on

Advertisement

Popular

Advertisement

Stay in the know. Anytime. Anywhere.

Subscribe to get daily news updates, insights and must reads delivered straight to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, I agree for my personal data to be used to send me TODAY newsletters, promotional offers and for research and analysis.

Aa