LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The “Bring Your Own Bag” campaign was launched Monday in Los Angeles to bring awareness of the city’s upcoming ban on plastic bags.

City workers were passing out free reusable bags for customers to use when the ban, which will prohibit large stores grossing more than $2 million a year from handing out plastic grocery bags, will take effect Jan. 1, 2014.

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Under the law, customers will be required to provide personal reusable bags when visiting stores or pay 10 cents per paper bag.

After a few years, officials will determine if paper bags should be banned as well, councilmember Paul Koretz told KNX1070’s Vytas Safronikas.

“Part of the legislation requires that in a couple of years we look at whether paper usage has almost been eliminated by the reusable bag,” he said. “If there’s still a high amount of paper usage, we’ll probably ban that as well.”

Los Angeles, which is the largest city in the country to ban plastic bags, spends about $2 million a year cleaning up litter related to the non-biodegradable bags.

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“Plastic produce bags are not being banned, that’s because of health and safety and hygiene. They tend to be much thinner so they don’t waste as much plastic,” Koretz said.

The law will go into effect July 1, 2014 for smaller stores that carry limited groceries, including liquor stores and independent markets.


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