Cody Kitaura (Editor), SONOMA VALLEY PATCH
A state appeals court has upheld a San Francisco law banning the use of non-compostable plastic bags at checkout stands in retail stores and grocery markets.
The 2012 law, an expansion of an earlier measure, prohibits most single-use plastic checkout bags and requires stores to charge 10 cents for paper or compostable plastic bags.
The ordinance was upheld Tuesday by a three-judge panel of the state Court of Appeal in San Francisco. The court ruled on a challenge by the Los-Angeles-based Save the Plastic Bag Coalition, a manufacturers’ association that has been battling plastic bag laws around the state.
Among other arguments, the coalition claims paper bags are a greater burden to the environment than their plastic counterparts.
Supporters of the bans contend the laws reduce litter, waste, pollution of waterways and harm to wildlife.
via As Sonoma County Mulls Plastic Bag Ban, Court Upholds SF Ban Law – Government – Sonoma Valley, CA Patch.
Lori A. Carter, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Petaluma City Council members Monday night unanimously endorsed changes to a regional waste management agreement that would allow for the creation of a countywide ban on single-use plastic bags.
The amendments to the Sonoma County Waste Management Agency joint powers agreement would also give members — each city and the county — the flexibility to adopt their own ordinance with county enforcement or local control.
Any major amendments to the two-decades-old regional agreement must be approved by all members. Healdsburg, Sonoma, Sebastopol, Windsor and Cotati have approved the change. Santa Rosa, Sonoma County, Rohnert Park and Cloverdale are set to consider the issue in the next two months.
The council will vote on a formal resolution to the changes in January. An ordinance actually regulating plastic bags would come later.
via Petaluma backs changes to support plastic bag ban | The Press Democrat.
Sean Scully, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
If you’ve ever littered in or around the Santa Rosa plain, there is a reasonable chance that the object you threw away is now lodged in one of several garbage-strewn accidental dams clogging up the Laguna de Santa Rosa.
And it’s causing serious headaches for nearby landowners, environmentalists, and county water officials.
“Eventually all that garbage that comes out of Santa Rosa, out of Rohnert Park, out of Cotati, that comes down Mark West Creek, winds up here,” said Mike Thompson, assistant general manager of the Sonoma County Water Agency, on Monday as he surveyed a series of cleanup sites along the Laguna near Guerneville Road.
via Laguna de Santa Rosa clogged by litter, debris | The Press Democrat.
Editorial, PETALUMA ARGUS-COURIER
“Paper or plastic?” It’s a question we hear from clerks just about anytime we go shopping. But before long, that question should change to “Did you bring a reusable bag?”
Based on indisputable evidence showing that the proliferation of single-use plastic bags is doing substantial harm to the environment, city and county officials are finally poised to approve a countywide ban on carryout plastic bags at grocers and retailers.
It’s been several years since the county first began to explore enacting such a ban, so it’s high time for action on the proposal.
via Petaluma360.com | Petaluma Argus-Courier | Petaluma, CA.
Brett Wilkison, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Sonoma County supervisors Tuesday voiced support for a move that would expand the county’s central landfill by permanently turning over operations to a national solid waste contractor, starting with a 20-year deal worth an estimated $547 million.
In their first formal look at the proposal, members of the Board of Supervisors touted its benefits for garbage customers and taxpayers while opponents led by organized labor representatives called out its risks.
via Sonoma County Board of Supervisors backs landfill deal | Petaluma360.com | Petaluma Argus-Courier | Petaluma, CA.
Brett Wilkison, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Sonoma County’s plans to permanently reopen and expand its central landfill cleared a major hurdle Thursday, receiving a go-ahead from North Coast water regulators.
The decision approving a permit for up to 22 more years of operation at the Mecham Road site west of Cotati came from the same state agency that nearly a decade ago raised pollution concerns that triggered a five-year closure of the landfill.
via Effort to reopen Sonoma County landfill advances | PressDemocrat.com.
Chris Smith, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
If you were at Golden Gate Park’s huge Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival this past weekend you might have seen Mary Munat, in the garbage.
A closer look would have revealed that Munat, a Windsor resident known throughout the Bay Area and beyond as Green Mary, was in fact expending most of her energy and effort on non-garbage.
For more than a decade, her chief reason for being has been to educate, cajole, pester and shame organizers and attendees of large, public events to move aggressively toward generating no trash to be buried in landfills.
via Sonoma County’s ‘Green Mary’ Munat hard at work | PressDemocrat.com.
by Jeremy Hay, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Sonoma County supervisors Tuesday moved forward with a countrywide ban on plastic bags now given out at grocery stores.The ban would apply to grocery stores but not restaurants or bags used for meat and vegetables. The ordinance, which is still being fine-tuned to address questions about enforcement mechanisms and authority, would also levy a 10-cent charge on paper bags. That money would be collected by and go to the grocers.
via Sonoma County Board of Supervisors advance plastic bag ban | Petaluma360.
by Martin Espinoza, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Sonoma County has taken a big step toward a countywide ban on plastic carryout bags to reduce landfill waste and litter. The county Waste Management Agency authorized its staff Wednesday to request proposals from consultants for environmental review of the proposed ban.
via Sonoma County Waste Management Agency OKs review of proposed plastic bag ban | PressDemocrat.com.
Sonoma County Waste Management Agency Holds Stakeholder and Community Feedback Forums on Carryout Bag Reduction Efforts
March 2, 2012 – The Sonoma County Waste Management Agency (SCWMA) wants your feedback on what is to be done about paper and plastic carryout bags (the bags given for free at the checkout counter). To hear from as many businesses and citizens as possible, the SCWMA is hosting nine public meetings to present what actions are under consideration and to receive feedback.
Outreach Dates and Locations: All Meeting Start at 6 pm
• March 12 – Petaluma Veterans Memorial, 1094 Petaluma Blvd S., Petaluma
• March 13 – Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial, 1351 Maple Avenue, Santa Rosa
• March 14 – Sonoma Veterans Memorial, 126 First Street West, Sonoma
• March 19 – Cotati Veterans Memorial, 8505 Park Avenue, Cotati
• March 20 – Cloverdale Veterans Memorial, 205 West First Street Cloverdale
• March 22 – Windsor Community Center, Elsbree Hall, 901 Adele Drive, Windsor
• March 23 – Rohnert Park Community Center, 5401 Snyder Lane, Rohnert Park
• March 26 – Villa Chanticleer Annex, 1248 N. Fitch Mountain Road, Healdsburg
• March 27 – Sebastopol Masonic Center, 373 N. Main Street, Sebastopol