Plastic Bag Free Movement

Leni Fried of Cummington, MA writes:

The Bagshare Project is ramping up. I’ve been researching a movement called PBF. This stands for Plastic Bag Free. The first town to do this, at least in Europe, is the small town (1500 people) of Modbury in the UK. This is a seaside town and a woman there, Rebecca Hoskins, noticed all the plastic debris on her local beach and watched a sea turtle die that had a plastic bag in its mouth. This experience drove her to contact all the merchants in Modbury to come to a showing of a film called Message in the Waves. After viewing the film all the shopkeepers made a pledge to no longer use plastic bags.

This in turn spurred a movement around the world to create Plastic Bag Free towns! The web site is great to use. It is an extensive organizing tool to help achieve this goal. I will soon be meeting with the business association in Shelburne Falls, MA to discuss working towards the goal of making Shelburne Falls the first PBF town in Western Massachusetts.

Please take a minute to watch Message in the Waves. It is a very powerful experience. I have also purchased a longer film (44 minutes) called Battle of the Bags. We will be showing this at The Old Creamery in Cummington, MA on March 23rd at 7 p.m. If you would like to borrow it please let me know. I would like to arrange as many public showings as possible. This film is being used in Great Barrington, MA to try and get the merchants there to pass an ordinance against plastic bag use.

Sewing bags and starting Bagshares is an important step to educate the public. It works perfectly in conjunction with changing the larger infrastructure. If people are not offered a free non-biodegradable plastic bag, that would be a lot of pollution that will never make it to the ocean and inside the stomach of an animal.

5 stores are interested in working with The Bagshare Project in Shelburne Falls. They are Boswells Books, McCuskers Market and 3 others.

Berkshire Organics in Dalton, MA will be starting sewing circles along with St. Stephens Episcopal Church in Pittsfield, MA. They will both be sewing for Berkshire Organics. They need 250 bags to launch.

I have been contacted by a library in Agawam, MA

I am in touch with Thom Smith. He will be publishing an article in The Berkshire Eagle about The Bagshare Project in Berkshire County. This will come out in the next two weeks.

We are in process of setting up donation cans in the various stores. We need to raise money for tags, sewing needles and thread. If anyone can make a donation, there are cans at Florence Hardware in Florence, MA, and Serios Market in Northampton, MA. Donations can also be left with Alice or Amy at The Old Creamery for The Bagshare Project.

Thank you!

P.S.S. Please send me your Bagshare news too!

3 Comments on “Plastic Bag Free Movement

  1. Message in the Waves Movie Screening
    Monday, February 1st, 2010 from 7-8:30pm
    At The Old Creamery Sustainability library upstairs and around the back from The Creamery
    Sponsored by The Bagshare Project
    Contact: Leni 413 634-5591

    “Hawai‘i -Message in the Waves” is a film from the BBC Natural History Unit looking at some of the environmental challenges facing the people and wildlife of the Hawaiian Islands.

    Although the documentary is from a Hawaiian perspective it is really a global film. Because of their size, location and social history, the Hawaiian Islands represent a microcosm of the planet and are in a unique position to tell all of us where we are going wrong and what we can do to help put things right.

    There are many messages in the waves but the one we learned in Hawai‘i that we feel requires immediate attention is that of global plastic pollution. We have put this website together to provide some more information about the problem and how you as an individual can directly help!!! Please look at our action and links page for helpful tips. Take inspiration from towns in the UK that are now going plastic bag free due to watching this documentary. You see you can make a direct difference.!!

    ” Kuleana”- privilege AND responsibility. Although we made the film, this is an unofficial web companion and does not reflect the views of the BBC.

    Call Leni for directions or ask at The Creamery

  2. congratulation!! :-) At least one can do this. Cheers to her,.
    This is really a great problem in todays world. we should take some serious step to ban the plastic products otherwise it will make a huge to the world climate and even to it’s existence.

    Look at Transitionus.ning for my event.
    If you are on Skype and active in the PBF field give me a shout

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