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!