DC Residents Get Ready to Skip the Bag and Save the River!

Posted on November 18, 2009. Filed under: living green, water conservation |

It’s official! Beginning January 1, 2010, Washington D.C.’s businesses that sell food or alcohol must charge 5 cents for each disposable paper or plastic carryout bag.

According to DC’s Department of the Environment (DDOE), the business keeps 1 cent, or 2 cents if it offers a rebate when you bring your own bag, and the remaining 3 or 4 cents go to the new Anacostia River Protection Fund. DDOE will administer this fund. The money will be used it to provide reusable bags, educate the public about litter, and clean up the river.

The District has also partnered with CVS/pharmacy to produce and hand out 112,000 reusable bags primarily to District residents, with many going to seniors and low-income communities. Some of the bags have been distributed at recent kick-off events, but it was not clear exactly where and when new distributions will be made other than announcing they will take place in 2010.

What does this mean for green in DC?

This tax sends a pretty clear message that DC is getting serious about it’s Green Agenda. If you don’t already know, DDOE offers a number of FREE eco-support services:

  • Free ENERGY STAR appliances (must meet household size and income requirements)
  • Free weatherizing help (must meet household size and income requirements)
  • Free home energy audit (All residents can apply for homes under 4,000 square feet)

Guess what DC? It looks like it’s time to finally get our green on and be a model green capitol (or at least aspire to be)!

be well. live green.

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