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Plastic bags pose danger

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 by Jolene Toves

Guam - You can find plastic bags in almost every store on island they come in different sizes and colors. While they are convenient, they also take a serious toll on our environment.

Guam EPA administrator Eric Palacios told KUAM News, "There are definitely human health dangers associated with the use of plastic bags with the presence of plastic bags there are environmental health dangers associated with that as well."

Palacios says to some degree bio degradable plastic bags offer some beneficial reuse potential, but  it does not eliminate the dangers to human health. "It's good to know that manufacturers are making them much greener it's our hope that as that trend continues that more and more of the bags become quicker to biodegrade should they enter our environment whether our land or our oceans," he added.

Depending on the type of plastic it can take up to 100 years to disintegrate. Should a plastic bag find its way into our environment and our ocean it becomes a danger to marine life, as Palacios said, "In our marine environment unfortunately fish shellfish turtle sometimes consume these items could cause them to die it could get wrapped around parts of their body."

Because of the environmental impacts several island stores have chosen to offer alternatives to plastic bags, such as reusable bags. Other alternatives include using wooden baskets and card board boxes. So the next time you need to pick up a few groceries or are on a shopping spree think green and use a reusable bag. 
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