Plastic bag ban would benefit Champaign

Champaign has recently considered placing a tax on plastic single-use bags in order to reduce the community’s carbon footprint. Not only is this proposal an environmentally-friendly alternative to excessive plastic use, but we believe tax revenue received from such a fee could help support the City of Champaign — something that, in the current economic climate, could greatly help local residents.

A tax on plastic bags would limit the amount of plastic used by the public, discouraging them to use plastic bags and instead bring their own from home. Residents are more likely to bring a bag from home if there’s a cost associated with forgetting about it. If enacted, Champaign would be in the company of many larger U.S. cities to use such a tax, including Washington, D.C., Seattle and San Francisco.

A plastic bag tax could also generate as much as $200,000 in revenue for Champaign, as Angela Adams, recycling coordinator for the City of Champaign, told The Daily Illini. This money could eventually be allocated towards other resources and programs the community needs.

Though the tax has been voted down by the Illinois Student Senate, it has received much local support. Champaign residents indicated in a recent survey that 67 percent of citizens favored a tax or a ban on single-use plastic bags.

It is to the benefit of community residents that a ban on plastic bags be enacted. Not only would this cut down on plastic usage and ultimately the environmental concerns associated with single-use bags, but the tax could ultimately help Champaign strengthen resources that may currently be far out of reach.