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They are how we protect our special coastal places

11 • 15 • 2012

Portland Better Bag Ban

The Portland Chapter of Surfrider Foundation worked to advocate for an expansion of Portland's Bag Ban ordinance passed in July of 2011 to include all retailers and restaurants, as well as advocating for a fee on paper bags. Focusing in on a one year analysis of the ordinance from the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability and working with grocers and businesses to demonstrate strong support, the chapter was able to successfully advocate for an expansion of the policy to include all retailers and restaurants, while the fee on paper bags will have to be revisited again upon further analysis of the expanded policy next year. On November 15th, the City Council voted unanimously to move the expanded policy forward, taking the ordinance's impact on plastic bags from 167 retail outlets to some 5,000 retail outlets and restaurants. While the chapter was working on an even more comprehensive policy that included a fee, they see this expansion as a major victory in their effort to eliminate plastic from the environment and wastestream.