It’s been an idea kicked around for years: Ban the plastic bags that wind up littering our landscape, jeopardizing marine ecosystems, and fouling our oceans. But a ban, or even a fee on single-use carry out bags, has yet to make much headway among legislators or policymakers. With a growing recognition of the scope of the problem, however, the push to eliminate or discourage the use of plastics is gaining more support, as evidenced by New York’s plan to ban plastic bags as early as next year.
Is it time for New Jersey to follow suit? Perhaps so, but the issue is likely to face a tough road in the Legislature and an uncertain response by the Murphy administration, both of which are embroiled in a potentially bruising battle over next year’s state budget.