As I've previously mentioned, Seattle is enacting a plastic bag tax of 20 cents per bag in January. The tax will also apply to styrofoam food containers, but those will eventually be banned. The restaurants are responsible for providing alternatives to styrofoam containers, but for bags we're on our own.
I have mixed feelings on this. While I appreciate people making efforts to lessen their impact on the environment, I don't necessarily want the latest green trend shoved down my throat by government.
Here is an editorial on the subject: here
Behavior can be changed several ways, but it seems like the solution to everything is to punish us in our pocket books. A cynical person might be inclined to think the city is just trying to make more money. Do we not believe in positive reinforcement anymore? Ikea gives you 25 cents off per reusable bag you fill and I see tons of people with those hideous blue and yellow bags. They aren't even easy to carry!
ANYWAY... I like the idea of minimizing our environmental impact, but I don't think that's what this is about. I stand by my plan to find offensive tote bags (organic cotton, of course.)