Sunday, September 14, 2014

Worried About Climate Change?

Worried about climate change? With the largest climate demonstration in history coming to our town next Sunday it’s a good time to think about how plastic contributes to climate change. Plastic use releases hundreds of millions of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year – an amount that could be greatly reduced by recycling more plastic and finding alternatives to everyday plastic items that we really don’t need. Think about it the next time you’re in the coop pulling plastic bags off the roll for your produce or bulk items. Just by getting into the habit of reusing plastic bags or replacing them with cloth bags, each of us can decrease our personal contribution to climate change while we’re lobbying world governments to take the big, urgent actions needed to avert climate disaster. Want to make your own cloth bags? Come to the Coop Environmental Committee's Big Sewing Event, Sunday, November 9, beginning at noon in the community room upstairs at the coop.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Earth Day tabling event outside the Park Slope Food Coop

At an Earth Day tabling event outside the Park Slope Food Coop, the PSFC Environmental Committee asks fellow coop members to share their shopping practices in the effort to minimize the use of plastic roll bags.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

VOTE YES : Proposal to Reduce Plastic Roll Bag Use

The vote to approve our Proposal to Reduce Plastic Roll Bag Use has been scheduled for this Tuesday's February 25th General Meeting at the Bishop Ford Central Catholic High School.

Check out the Environmental Committee's new video presentation, which examines why reducing our plastic footprint is so important for our community and our planet.

Download our General Meeting Handouts for more information.
Hope to see you there!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Update: Plastic Roll Bag Vote

The vote to approve the new and improved Proposal to Reduce Plastic Roll Bag Use has been scheduled for the February 25th General Meeting at the Bishop Ford Central Catholic High School.

The Environmental Committee met with the General Coordinators and other members to discuss improvements to the original proposal and the proposal has been amended to address membership concerns.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

The Shopper

"A short comedic film, inspired by The Artist, about a woman learning to shop without disposable plastic bags. Created by the Environmental Committee of the Park Slope Food Coop,  one of the oldest and largest active food co-ops in the United States, in an attempt to educate Coop members about the ills of plastic bag overuse/consumption and how easy it is to shop without them. The Environmental Committee is currently introducing a proposal to reduce plastic bag use at the Coop."

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Plastic Roll Bag Update

Dear Coop Members and Friends of The Park Slope Food Coop Environmental Committee,

You are over due an update and apologies for the delay. First of all, let me direct you to the link, "Reduce Plastic Roll Bag Use-Learn More" (see image above right). If you click this link it will take you to the amended proposal that our Committee worked on over the summer and is now being looked at by the Coop's Agenda Committee.

This amendment came out of our committee spending much time in the Coop (during our tabling events -see photo above), listening to members concerns, as well as sitting down several times for meetings with General Coordinators and hearing their concerns. Our main goal with both the original proposal and the amended one is to REDUCE PLASTIC ROLL BAG USAGE IN COOP and ENCOURAGE RE-USE of PLASTIC.

Here are the main points of our amended proposal:

This proposal aims to reduce the Coop's reliance on plastic roll bags on the shopping floor. 

We propose to achieve this goal by:
  • Ending the free distribution of plastic roll bags and making them available for purchase.
  • Insuring the Coop stocks a selection of low-cost, lightweight, re-usable roll bag alternatives.
  • Improving floor signage and access to reusable bags.
  • Encouraging members to reuse plastic bags already taken from the Coop and elsewhere.
The Coop's free distribution of plastic roll bags, when sustainable options and practices are available, violates our Mission Statement and Environmental Policy. The goal of this proposal is to encourage bag reuse, help reduce plastic waste, and raise awareness about this environmentally damaging material. Educational activities and communications will be provided to help with member transition.

Here is the time line from MAY 28th to Present:

  • MAY 28th 2013- GM Vote was held for Original Proposal- "Plastic Bag Phase Out".
    Due to the small size of space where GM was held (Public School in Park Slope) and the size of crowd of coop members that showed up (500+),  not all who showed up could not fit in space and the vote was tabled, to be rescheduled in bigger space.
  • June 20th 2013- The Environmental Committee, at our regularly scheduled meeting, decides to set up a meeting with general coordinators to discuss what happened at that GM, listen to their concerns about current proposal and how we would proceed to schedule next vote.
  • July 25th 2013- Environmental Committee members have the meeting with Park Slope Food Coops General Coordinators. The general coordinators have time to voice their concerns and we, the committee, have time to voice our goals and priorities for this proposal and our hope, that we could work together with General Coordinators, to educate the coop members about plastic usage and re-use.
  • August 27th 2013- After the July meeting with GC's,  the committee meets again and decides to amend the original proposal.
  • October 2013- This amended proposal is now being looked at by Coop's Agenda Committee, who is deciding whether the amended proposal requires another GM Discussion or a VOTE can now finally be rescheduled.  
We will keep you posted, thanks for reading and we appreciate your support!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

6/24 EVENT: Ban the Plastic Bag, NYC!

The Environmental Committee is co-sponsoring an great event on Monday June 24 at 7 PM at the Greenwood Baptist Church!

Please join City Council Member Brad Lander, the Green Party of Brooklyn, Sierra Club, NRDC, No Impact Project, Citizens Committee for New York City, Sane Energy, NYC Friends of Clearwater, and BagItNYC for an informative evening to learn about the massive environmental impact that single-use plastic bags have in NYC, and the NYC campaign to do something about it.

This free event will take place at:
Speakers will include:
  • Council Member Brad Lander, who will be introducing legislation on plastic bags
  • Jennie Romer, who spear headed successful efforts in California to ban / restrict single use plastic bags and will discuss the various possible approaches (ban, fee, tax, etc)
  • Colin Beavan (No Impact Man)
  • Carl Arnold from the NY Green Party and the Sierra Club
  • Peter Kostmayer, former CEO of Citizens Committee for NYC.
The event will be an excellent opportunity to learn more about this issue and find out how you can get involved with the plastic bag campaign in NYC.

Bring some plastic bags to add them to the "Plastic Bag Mandala" and receive a free reusable bag!

Single use plastic bags have been banned or restricted in cities across the US, including California (75 local jurisdictions including LA County and San Francisco), Washington, DC and Austin, TX. In LA County, a ban on single-use plastic carryout bags and a 10-cent charge on paper bags lead to a 95% reduction in single-use plastic bags in the first year.

In a recent NY Times article, the city’s recycling director pointed out that “Plastic shopping bags are an enormous problem for New York City,” noting that the city pays $10 million annually to landfill 100,000 tons of plastic bags. When plastic bags are carelessly placed into recycling bins for general plastic — which they often are — the bags jam and damage expensive sorting machines, which cost huge amounts to repair.

For more information, please contact