Tuesday, October 1, 2013

To bag or not to bag: the Target dilemma

As you might have heard, headlining the news recently (forget about the death and destruction taking part in the rest of the world) was that Target have decided to stop charging customers for biodegradable bags and returning to giving them a plastic bag with their purchases.

This is ridiculous! Apparently there was an insignificant amount of complaints from customers protesting the charge of a whole 10 cents for a bag that won't hang around landfill for millenium but is actually made from cornflour.  These customers are upset that after buying more 'stuff' at bargain prices at the expense of the Australian economy, the thought of handing over a coin that they wouldn't bend over to pick up off the floor was too traumatic.

Why can't people think bigger than their own slight discomfort?  OK, I know why, because none of us can see what one little person can do to make a difference to the destruction of our planet.  Why should I have to fork out a whole 10 cents when multi quatrillion dollar mining companies just keep drilling, pillaging and raping (OK, bit carried away there).

I know I harp on a bit about being a greenie, but when I hear young people say they can't be bothered separating their recycling as it won't make much difference to saving the environment, I despair.  And when I walk around the bay and can see the tide washing in dozens of plastic bags and plastic bottles every day, I despair.  And when I see people that park outside my house and throw out their Macca's rubbish into the gutter to wash down the drain, I despair.  And when I see huge petrol guzzling four wheel drives taking over the suburbs by the hundreds and they only have one or two people in them going from the city to school to dancing to oboe lessons and to Target, I despair.

(not a bird poncho)

I'm not perfect by any means. We have two cars and I drive to places I could walk or ride to. I buy packaged foods and though I love to rummage through a second hand clothing store now and then, I do still buy inexpensive chain store bits and pieces.

But I do take my own bags shopping and re-use any plastic bags I get stuck with.  And I do not mind handing over a ten cent coin if it means one less sea creature gets choked to death.

There are many little things we can do which can make a big difference in the big scheme of things.  And there are so many fellow greenies out in internet land which know a bucket load more than me about how to go about this. Here are few I've come across:
  • Little Eco Footprints - A beautiful blog that is trying to make a very small footprint on the earth
  • Freecycle - a great site where you can list your unwanted stuff and find other stuff
  • ecostore - I buy these products when I can find them in the supermarket (as of last week there was not one of their products in my local Coles, so yet another reason to avoid one of the biggies), but I'm going to buy online directly from now on.
  • Down To Earth - everything you could possibly want to know about living sustainably from someone who lives it everyday.
And if you want to know more facts about how plastic is affecting our oceans, just check out the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

So if you're keen to make a weeny little difference at all, take you own bags to the shops please. And as a reward, here's Tim Minchin helping to convince you:


  1. That's ridiculous! I thought it was such a good idea that Target had changed- I cannot believe they are changing back. I find it frustrating that there are people who could recycle and choose not to, and yet my council cannot get their act together to even provide us with recycling services.

    1. We just need to be constantly mindful of our own actions of reusing and recycling and hopefully be an example.We should be asking our councils what do they do to contribute to greening our environment. There is big money in recycling.I live within one of the so called greenest council in the land and they don't even supply green waste bins and the recycling truck and the garbage truck are one and the same.

  2. How stupid is that, and how bad is it that I didn't know - shame on them! So silly to go back to rubbish bags, it certainly made me not take one and just put in with my other ones - BOO :( And OMG I adore Tim Minchin, a lyrical genius!

  3. I used my resusable shopping bags all the time - I even take them to Target with me :)

  4. Well said Becci. I wonder what they will do up here in Darwin as plastic bags are illegal, unless they are the reusable ones you purchase.
    I love those target corn flour bags. They smell and feel so nice

  5. What a joke, there is no reason why people can't pay 10c, I have no problem with it and will only get a bag if I am getting lots of stuff and not going straight back to the car or don't have the pram with me. People are crazy. Love this post and your passion!

    #teamIBOT was here!

  6. Couldn't agree more. I was gobsmacked to hear about this. I can't tell you how many times I've seen people disregard 5c or 10c pieces, but will whine and rant and rave over paying the same amount for a bag - a bag that is environmentally friendly! Seriously....face palm....


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