Eco-Awareness Is In The (Reusable) Bag

From cheap to designer, totes help eliminate the plastic glut
By Sarah Seltzer,  Newser User
Posted May 7, 2007 10:57 AM CDT
Eco-Awareness Is In The (Reusable) Bag
A doll uses her own pink shopping bag instead of a plastic bag during her shopping in a display setup which is part of Japanese government's campaign against global warming in Tokyo Jan. 18, 2007. The dolls, Japan's answer to Barbie dolls, are being used by Japanese Ministry of the Environment in their...   (Associated Press)

Whether it's a designer tote bag with a three-figure price tag or a $5 carryall from the convenience store, Americans are slowly catching on to the European trend of answering the eternal question "paper or plastic" with "neither." Tote bags eliminate environmental stress, proclaim a consumer's eco-friendliness, and can even exude style.

In Europe, the Los Angeles Times says, "designers have seized on the old-style tote bag like stylists going to work on an aging hippie in a beauty salon." But the bring-your-own habit has yet to penetrate buy-in-bulk America—at the moment, 90 percent of purchases go home in plastic. (More environmentalism stories.)

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