紐時賞析/10年前開始禁用一次性塑膠袋 加州人去年塑膠袋丟棄量反增

紐時賞析/10年前開始禁用一次性塑膠袋 加州人去年塑膠袋丟棄量反增

美施壓籲改革 巴勒斯坦總理辭職

鬼術妖姬 小說

將近十年前,加州成爲美國第一個禁止一次性塑膠袋的州,以努力解決棘手的塑膠廢棄物問題。示意圖。圖片來源/Ingimage

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California Tried to Ban Plastic Grocery Bags. It Didn’t Work.

加州試圖禁止用塑膠袋購物 失敗收場

Almost a decade ago, California became the first state in the United States to ban single-use plastic bags in an effort to tackle an intractable plastic waste problem.

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將近十年前,加州成爲美國第一個禁止一次性塑膠袋的州,以努力解決棘手的塑膠廢棄物問題。

Then came the reusable, heavy-duty plastic bags, offered to shoppers for 10 cents. Designed to withstand dozens of uses, and technically recyclable, many retailers treated them as exempt from the ban.

接着出現可重複使用的耐用塑膠袋,以10美分提供給消費者。這種塑膠袋設計成經得起數十次使用,而且技術上可回收利用,許多零售商把它們當成豁免於禁令之外。

But because they didn’t look much different from the flimsy bags they replaced, lots of people didn’t actually reuse them. And though they came emblazoned with a recycling symbol, it turned out that few, if any, actually were recycled.

但因爲這種袋子看上去跟它們取代的輕薄袋子沒有太大區別,很多人其實並未重複利用。儘管袋子上印有回收標誌,但結果卻顯示,如果有的話,實際上很少被回收。

The unhappy result: Last year, Californians threw away more plastic bags, by weight, than when the law first passed, according to figures from CalRecycle, California’s recycling agency.

這導致了一個不愉快的結果:根據加州回收機構CalRecycle的數據,比起法律首度通過的時候,按照重量計算,加州人去年丟掉更多塑膠袋。

Now, lawmakers are trying to fix that. A new bill seeks to ban all plastic bags offered at the checkout line, including the heavy duty kind. (Shoppers would still be able to pay for a paper bag.)

現在,立法者正在設法收拾這個問題。一項新法案試圖禁止在收銀臺提供一切塑膠袋,包括耐用類。(消費者仍將能夠付錢買紙袋)。

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“It’s time for us to get rid of plastic bags all together,” said state Sen. Ben Allen, a Democrat and a sponsor of the bill.

民主黨籍法案提案人、州參議員艾倫說,「現在我們該完全擺脫塑膠袋了」。

By some accounts, California’s initial plastic bag ban was a well-meaning but failed experiment, an environmental rule that backfired and inadvertently made the matter worse. “We didn’t worry about the carve-out for these thicker bags in the early days,” said Mark Murray, director of Californians Against Waste, an advocacy group. “It just didn’t seem like they were going to be the thing that they ultimately became.”

根據一些說法,加州最初的塑膠袋禁令是個出於善意但失敗的實驗,一個適得其反的環保規定,而且不經意把情況變得更糟。倡議團體「加州人反對浪費」主任穆雷說,「一開始我們並不擔心推出這種較厚的袋子,只是它們似乎沒有成爲最終想要變成的樣子」。

Some advocates say the initial ban would have been effective if properly enforced. The ban, adopted in 2014, allowed for plastic bags to be sold to shoppers only if they were widely recycled in California.

一些倡議人士說,如果妥善執行,最初的禁令本來會起作用。該禁令於2014年正式通過,只要是在加州廣泛回收,就允許出售塑膠袋給消費者。

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Daniel Conway of the California Grocers Association said retailers had “followed the letter of the law.” He said he hoped new legislation would clear up any confusion that remained over the thicker bags.

加州雜貨商協會的康威表示,零售商已「遵循法律條文」。他說,他希望新的立法能釐清與較厚袋子有關的任何尚存混亂。

“We see this as finishing what we started,” he said. “People are really starting to accept that they bring reusable bags with them when they go to the grocery store.”

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他說,「我們認爲,這是完成我們開始的工作。人們真的已開始接受,前往雜貨店時隨身帶着可重複使用的袋子」。

文/Hiroko Tabuchi 譯/周辰陽