Remember to Bring a Tote Bag!
After years of debate, Boston’s plastic bag ban has arrived. On Friday, Dec. 14, Boston joined more than 87 other Massachusetts cities and towns in limiting the use of disposable plastic bags. As we try to get used to this change, we can feel good knowing that we are helping to limit the damage these thin bags do to our waterways, trash and sewage systems, and wildlife and human health.
The new rules prevent the use of the thin, plastic bags with carry handles, such as in a grocery store or takeout order. Instead, retailers must offer paper bags (with at least 40-percent recycled paper), compostable bags, or reusable thicker plastic bags, and they must charge at least 5 cents for each.
The rules are being phased in with the largest retailers beginning Dec. 14, mid-size stores beginning April 1, 2019, and the smallest businesses coming last on July 1, 2019. (There are a few exemptions that you can learn more about at https://www.boston.gov/departments/environment/reducing-plastic-bags-city-boston.)
The ‘bag ban’ does not include plastic newspaper bags, plastic wrapping on food, dry cleaning bags or trash bags. It also does not include dog waste disposal bags, although dog owners can be friends to the environment by choosing to buy biodegradable waste bags (readily available at Amazon and other pet supply stores).
We are encouraged to see Boston trying to limit single use plastics and hope this effort leads to healthier outcomes in our neighborhood and our city.
Please stop by the BHCA office at 74 Joy St. to pick up a reusable bag!
Upcoming BHCA Meetings
The BHCA office will be closed from Monday, Dec. 24, through Tuesday, Jan. 1. Our clothing and food collections are ongoing through January 31st – but please bring your donations by Friday Dec. 21 or after Jan. 1. We appreciate your involvement in this important community service.
Other upcoming BHCA Events
Health Care in the Streets: Lessons from Three Decades of Caring for Boston’s Rough Sleepers with Dr. Jim O’Connell – Thursday, Jan. 17, 7-8:30 p.m., 74 Joy St.
47th Annual Beacon Hill Gala – Saturday, Feb. 9, at the Omni Parker House
Visit the Beacon Hill Civic Association website www.bhcivic.org or call the office (617-227-1922) for more information on any of these events.