"As though the paper-or-plastic question weren't vexing enough, now some retailers are finding that the "biodegradable" plastic bags they'd hoped would please green shoppers might not be so Earth-friendly after all.
"Lunds and Byerly's recently replaced its plastic bags with a biodegradable bag made of low-density polyethylene that purportedly breaks down when exposed to sunlight, oxygen, soil, moisture and microbes.
"But biodegradable bags are still petroleum-based, and while they do break down into smaller particles, chemicals eventually show up in the food chain and our bodies, according to Susan Hubbard, CEO of Eureka Recycling in Minneapolis. And it's unclear whether biodegradable bags can be recycled."Read the full story
I think they are talking about 'degradable' bags but this isn't the cornstarch ones.
It seems to me that the most eco-friendly option of all would be to get a basket your grandmother made from old clothes or a willow tree and use it every time you go shopping.
Disposable stuff, even if it is compostable, is much more energy-demanding and rubbish-generating than things that can be used over and over again for years.
Of course most people would probably say that some things have to be disposable, but is that really true? Its all about how much work we are prepared to put in to compensate for the disposability of stuff. Its a real tedious thing to have to wash out and carry reusable pots to carry fresh fish home. Where does the line lie? Will it move as resources become scarcer?