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Should Bottled Water Be Banned? How About Plastic Bags? Leaf Blowers?

Concord's ban on bottled water just went into effect. Brookline recently banned plastic bags and Styrofoam cups. Arlington took a stand against leaf blowers.

Bay State towns have gone on a bit of a banning spree lately.

Concord’s so-called bottle ban became a bylaw on Jan. 1, Brookline recently banned plastic bags and Styrofoam cups and Arlington’s Town Meeting this fall upheld a seasonal leaf blower ban. Meanwhile, home-cooked foods have been forced out of many schools, an ostensible attempt to protect against allergies and childhood obesity.

Is there an activity or item you would want to see banned out of environmental, health or quality-of-life concerns? Or would you ban bans? Let us know in the comments section below.

Bill Bowler January 09, 2013 at 05:35 PM
http://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=34&t=6 While the issue of personal freedom is paramount, these bans are nothing more than feel good PR measures. Department of Energy statistics above show that ALL production of plastics uses less than 5% of petroleum resources annually. Of this plastic bottles and bags are a pittance.
Bill January 09, 2013 at 05:36 PM
By the way, the weather has been pretty nice for Jan - Global warming may be a good thing
MR MOTTO January 09, 2013 at 05:54 PM
LETS THROW ALL PEOPLE INTO THE SEA !!
Carolyn Ziering January 09, 2013 at 07:58 PM
Rather than banning, how about educating people! Which starts with collecting accurate information. Show them what the surplus of plastic bottles and bags does and suggest/provide ways to decrease their use.
Bob January 09, 2013 at 07:59 PM
Lets throw all Left wing communist socialistic Democratic liberals in the recycle bin.
John Merrett January 09, 2013 at 09:10 PM
With the billions of dollars at stake,...why can't they develop a more safe, eco-friendly container with all the advances in technology? It would cost more, but it's better than being banned.
MR MOTTO January 09, 2013 at 09:26 PM
I'll hold the lid open !
Phil Sego January 09, 2013 at 10:58 PM
The forfeited nickels are just like the money from people skipping on their bail, or unclaimed bank deposits. This inadvertent income exists, and it's the job of the state to deal with it. Saying that the state encourages the deposit system as a money maker is like saying that they’re encouraging people to skip bail.
adrienne January 09, 2013 at 11:53 PM
Oh! I'm with you Michele on that one! Can you just imagine? Silence for a whole day!
Sandy January 10, 2013 at 12:14 AM
Perhaps the real solution would be to return to a society where people have respect for one another. Would we need a ban on plastic bottles and bags if they were used in moderation and disposed of properly? Would we need a ban on leaf blowers if gardeners and landscape companies would use them with some common sense and courtesy? Maybe what needs to be banned is selfish, careless behavior!
Paul Mozell January 10, 2013 at 12:40 AM
A vortex of swirling trash in the North Pacific Ocean is estimated to be twice the size of the State of Texas. Most of this flotsam and jetsum is plastic. The kind that lasts forever and ever. Plastic bags have been found in the stomachs of Albatrosses, and sparkling bits of other human-made matter are routinely ingested by fish of all sizes. The Town of Concord's recently enacted measure to prohibit the sale of bottle water is an easy target for name-calling and ridicule. Everyone agrees that shoppers who want to purchase bottled water will make a short trip to a neighboring town to buy Poland Spring or Evian Water, or Sparkle-this-and-that. Those who engage in the name-calling of polarized politics have found many ways to express their discontent. When viewed with a wider lens, the issue of bottled water is not about left-wing or right-wing doctrine, personal freedomws or about excessive regulation. Rather, it is about global warming , the consumption of fossil fuels, and our obsession with single-use products. Perhaps the residents of Concord subscribe to the philosophy: "Think Globally, Act Locally." Which town will be next to join the march? Springfield, Hingham, Lawrence, Barre, Provincetown, or Wakefield? In short time Massachusetts could be the first state in the nation to make a proud declaration to the rest of the world about its commitment to a greener earth. We are all part of the problem, and equally part of the solution.
Mike January 10, 2013 at 01:15 AM
Sadly it's already too late to save the oceans. The effects of global warming on the oceans has already set into motion a catastrophic chain of events that once begun, and it has, is extremely unlikely to ever reverse course. Now the goal is to slow the effects as much as possible to prepare for the coming disaster. My parents' generation ruined the planet with their overwhelming need for convenience and lack of concern for natural resources. Because of their selfishness and by teaching this same blindsightedness to most of my generation, now their grandchildren will pay an awful price. Enjoy your bottle of water that costs more to make than you can possibly comprehend.
Don Hammond January 10, 2013 at 02:36 AM
Banning leaf blowers from the local government is illegal. Only the EPA has authority to do so based off the units emissions output. They can put them in place but cant be enforced. A local noise ordinance can be set and enforced. Do we really want to have our law enforcement spending time running around with decibele meters? People should just use common sense and common courtesy.
Saber Walsh January 10, 2013 at 01:14 PM
Sorry, I was hurling after reading about global warming... Must be the flu. Only issue with leaf blowers is that "landscapers" use our catch basins as a trash bin for leaves, sticks and silt. Since we flood every time it rains, I would support hefty fines for those nimrods. Free the Whales from Tibet! (Sorry, must be the medicine)
Gizmo January 10, 2013 at 01:39 PM
Breathe? Have a nice day
Vanessa Lagrange January 10, 2013 at 05:33 PM
Now bottled water is banned, we could start making a change in our life style. It is not a big deal, carry with you a reusable bottled and fill it in a drinking fountain. I know most people think tap water is not safe and that is true but there is a healthy and safe way to drink tap water and assure you a pure water and it is called Aquasmarter. They sell a reusable bottle with a purifier inside. I and my husband have one of them, and it is amazing, since we have it, we have no worries about drinking tap water
Sean Ward January 10, 2013 at 05:35 PM
Plastic is probably the least single use product ever invented by mankind. It can be melted down and re-used over and over and over again. If they were truely committed to a greener earth they would be doing a better job of collecting the discarded bottles and recycling them. If you want the trash removed from the oceans take non-violent criminals out on boats with nets and have them start scooping the trash out and bringing it to recycling centers.
Bill January 10, 2013 at 06:10 PM
I'll take my chances with global warming over a public drinking fountain. Have you seen the public?
Amy Malkoff January 10, 2013 at 07:32 PM
Beautifully said, Paul. It's that refusal to view these issues with a wider lens, instead defaulting to jokey jabs at liberals or others. Jokes are awesome. I like funny things. But using them to cover your dismissal of issues that should actually be given some consideration is just lazy.
kathy Stevens January 10, 2013 at 07:34 PM
If you don't like one public drinking fountain, you have lots more to choose from. We only have one planet.
kathy Stevens January 10, 2013 at 07:37 PM
My experience doing Beach Clean Ups is that most of the trash is plastic food and drink containers and helium ballons.
Sean Ward January 10, 2013 at 07:42 PM
Any one of them could have been used as a restroom for some street person the night before. No thanks. Tap water is also filled with chemicals and since I don't walk around with a britta in my pocket I prefer to grab a bottle of spring water. If everyone that spent time debating and trying to create legislation and bylaws instead spent that time volunteering to go on cleanup and recycling projects they would probably save more dolphins.
Sean Ward January 10, 2013 at 08:22 PM
Vanessa, This is a great idea. However most of would forget to take our car keys with us if we didn't need them to start the car. Most people are unlikely to start carrying around their own kitchenware.
Sean Ward January 10, 2013 at 11:21 PM
So Mike, I'm assuming you drive an electric car, don't smoke, use only fresh unwrapped organic foods, collect your own rain water, have solar panels and windmills on your property, don't buy commercially packaged goods (except your computer of course), compost, and only do business with local companies that produce their goods by hand using local materials?
Mark Eckstein January 11, 2013 at 01:04 AM
We need to update the bottle bill.
Mark Eckstein January 11, 2013 at 01:05 AM
The bottle bill needs to include - water and juice bottles.
Ryan January 11, 2013 at 03:56 AM
How about banning dog walkers from using our sidewalks, parks and front lawns as a toilet for their dog. Walking around with a bag of dog waste shows what type of sub-human they are....sickening!!!
gumshoe January 11, 2013 at 12:05 PM
There is no use arguing, its too late, everyone wants to live in unnatural luxury and someday, possible quite soon the environment will adjust based on the changes mankind has made to it. Maybe the Mayans were right the world has already ended and we just don't know it yet.
Jon Q January 11, 2013 at 08:19 PM
In boxford we are going to ban American cars
john January 11, 2013 at 08:32 PM
What are we going to do about the explosion of coffee k-cups? They are designed to be thrown in the trash.

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