New York’s plastic bag ban, which first went into effect on March 1, and was on pause for seven months due to COVID and a pending lawsuit by Poly-Pak Industries, Inc., goes back into effect Monday, following a seven-month pause. In August, the New York State Supreme Court ruled that the law could go into effect on October 19th. DEC agreed in court to provide at least 30 days’ notice prior to commencing enforcement.
“The Court’s decision is a victory and a vindication of New York State’s efforts to end the scourge of single-use plastic bags and a direct rebuke to the plastic bag manufacturers who tried to stop the law and DEC’s regulations to implement it,” said Basil Seggos. Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation. “As we have for many months, DEC is encouraging New Yorkers to make the switch to reusable bags whenever and wherever they shop and to use common-sense precautions to keep reusable bags clean.”
The DEC asserts that New Yorkers use an estimated 23 billion plastic bags annually, which are generally used for an average of 12 minutes, with approximately 85% of the plastic ending up in landfills, recycling machines, waterways, and on the streets.