1. Headline
  1. Headline
Image: Shopping in California
Justin Sullivan  /  Getty Images
Under the bill, plastic bags would be banned and stores would be required to sell paper bags for at least 5 cents each.
msnbc.com news services
updated 6/4/2010 6:33:53 PM ET 2010-06-04T22:33:53

Editor's note: In the following article, msnbc.com erroneously reported that the California Senate passed legislation that would ban plastic shopping bags. The Senate has not passed the bill; it was read for the first time in the Senate on Thursday and is now before the Senate Rules Committee, according to the office of the secretary of the Senate.

California could become the first state in the nation to ban plastic shopping bags, a move that has the support of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The Assembly passed the bill on Wednesday and it's now before the Senate.

Schwarzenegger issued a statement after the Assembly vote, saying, "This bill will be a great victory for our environment."

The legislation would prohibit pharmacies, groceries and liquor and convenience stores from giving out plastic bags and require alternative retainers for goods.

  1. Stories from
    1. Patrick Warburton Set to Return in The Tick
    2. Sharon's Tate Sister Speaks about Manson Murders
    3. How Britney Spears Is Doing Post-Split
    4. It's Time to Study Andrew Garfield's Bushy Lumberjack Beard (PHOTOS)
    5. Joan Rivers's Condition 'Remains Serious,' Says Daughter Melissa

Stores would be required to sell paper bags for at least 5 cents each.

"Under this bill, if shoppers forget their reusable bags, they will be able to purchase a recycled paper bag made of 40 percent post-consumer material for a reasonable cost," Assemblywoman Julia Brownley, D-Santa Monica, told NBC affiliate KNTV.

Other towns and cities across the U.S. have already placed restrictions on plastic bags, including an outright ban in larger retail stores by three counties in North Carolina's Outer Banks. About 20 other California cities are considering similar laws.

Plastics bags are not biodegradable, meaning they stay for a long time in landfills and oceans. The goal is to reduce their accumulation.

In 2007, Annapolis, Md., was the first U.S. city to propose a total ban on plastic checkout bags when then-Alderman Sam Shropshire waged a campaign against them. While Maryland's bag campaign failed, it fueled efforts in other cities.

“We hope California can show other states that this is doable. We think this bill can be a model for other states to follow,” Gina Goodhill told the San Diego Tribune in an earlier interview. She specializes in oceans for the Los Angeles-based Environment California.

© 2013 msnbc.com

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,

Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments

More on TODAY.com

  1. Courtesy of Hockley family

    Sandy Hook mom: Shootings changed how we feel about going back to school

    8/29/2014 1:02:40 PM +00:00 2014-08-29T13:02:40
  1. Courtesy Andreas Kleinke

    'Brand new mini': Former Apple employee's baby announcement is charming

    8/29/2014 4:28:59 PM +00:00 2014-08-29T16:28:59
  1. Ben Garvin via Instagram

    Bill Murray sighting actually makes perfect sense for once

    8/29/2014 7:18:44 PM +00:00 2014-08-29T19:18:44
  1. Ariana Grande brings her ‘Everything,' huge crowd to TODAY plaza

    When you’ve got pop’s reigning princess making a royal visit to your show, what do you do? In the case of TODAY Friday, you just hand over the keys to the kingdom.

    8/29/2014 12:46:14 PM +00:00 2014-08-29T12:46:14
  2. video Pop star performs her No. 1 hit, ‘Problem’

    video The singer performs her hit tune on the TODAY plaza. Her second album, “My Everything,” is already No. 1 on iTunes in 80 countries.

    8/29/2014 6:49:03 PM +00:00 2014-08-29T18:49:03
  3. Ariana Grande on how she played off her most embarrassing on-stage moment

    Reigning princess of pop Ariana Grande exudes confidence on stage these days, but she says that wasn't always the case. Watch the video to find out how Grande played off a rocky moment during a performance.

    8/29/2014 4:35:57 PM +00:00 2014-08-29T16:35:57
  4. Jamie Mccarthy / Getty Images