Tuesday, March 30, 2010

I am a Grocery Bag

No reason not to cite this post in full (except perhaps creative integrity, etc):

PLASTIC BAG TAX IS INSANELY EFFECTIVE: THIS ONE IS FOR D.C. PEOPLE, as well as behavioral economists, who surely make up the rest of you: our beloved new five-cent plastic bag tax decreased plastic bag usage from 22.5 million to 3.3 million in the first month alone. Washington D.C. is now sparkly clean! We are so insane about taxes in this country. FIVE CENTS! Whatever. Some of us need to clean litter boxes and will continue to pollute like the dickens.

Washington Post via Wonkette.

It doesn't appear to be a major revenue stream, but that may not be the point. What should the total tax revenue represent? Perhaps the total cost of cleaning up littered grocery bags and housing D.C.'s share of grocery bags in landfills. When it's factored on a per-bag ratio, it should work out pretty well that any lost revenue from the deterrent effect should cancel out the cleanup costs that are no longer needed.

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