New ordinance looks to ban plastic bags on Isle of Palms

New ordinance looks to ban plastic bags on Isle of Palms

In a unanimous vote Tuesday, Isle of Palms city council members moved forward in the process of creating an ordinance banning the use of plastic bags at area checkout counters.

The vote came less than a month after a group of four friends and residents, banded together to champion the cause.

Resident Kathy Kent said she was inspired to action after her daughter asked why the sea turtles were endangered.

"I said it was difficult to make a difference because there were so many plastic bags out there, then I caught myself and realized that was a terrible lesson to teach my children."

Kent, along with residents Rini Kosmos, Christy Humphries, Jackie Kilroe, all presented the idea before city council Tuesday.

That's after researching the ban's impact compared to other coastal communities, like The Outer Banks in North Carolina.

The group says many local businesses also jumped in to offer their support, with Harris Teeter donating 3,000 recyclable bags, offering residents an alternative to plastic.

According to national nonprofit, Keep America Beautiful, in 2009, 2.12 million tons of plastics (of all kinds) were recycled in the United States, accounting for only 7.1% of all plastics generated in 2009.

If passed, the ban on Isle of Palms would allow six months for businesses to clear their inventory of plastic bags.

Currently, the city attorney is tasked with crafting an ordinance to be presented for first reading at next month's council meeting.

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