ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Paper Shopping Bags Are Environmentally Friendly

Updated on June 4, 2012


Nowadays the use of paper shopping bags is considered the action of an environmentally friendly person. However, such bags have been in use for over a hundred years. Ever since the invention of paper, paper has always been used to wrap items, which most such wrappings being tied down by string, which made it easy to carry the parcel.

The Birth of Paper Shopping Bags


The actual idea of paper shopping bags came from handles attached to preformed paper bags which then made it very easy for them to be carried about. This idea was even patented as an invention that allowed people to have their hands free. Subsequent developments also allowed such paper bags to be printed with advertisements, thus reducing the cost of their manufacture and making them items that were easily accepted. Shopkeepers preferred to give away such bags free, as a form of rolling advertising. However, one problem with paper shopping bags has always been their being accident prone and tearing very easily even when handled very carefully. This led to the bag industry looking for alternatives that soon came in the form of cheaper plastic that was much more durable. This led to a almost complete cessation of the use of paper shopping bags.

Environmental Awareness Brought Back Paper Bags


Plastic bags posed a huge threat to the environment because of the fact that they almost never deteriorate and remain permanently in the garbage or other dumps. Paper has a major advantage here, because it comes from plant material that is biodegradable and will thus not cause any damage to the environment. The incidental damage that is caused by paper shopping bags comes from the inks and other chemicals that are used to preserve the paper or print on it.

Factors That Affect Paper Shopping Bag Production


Scientists have been able to find ways to recycle both plastic and paper to produce new products. Paper shopping bags are just one of them. Making of paper shopping bags involves the production of paper which comes from trees, and cutting down trees to produce paper can affect essential green cover. Companies are however aware of this, and a number of paper companies claim that they produce paper only from captive plantations or recycled paper, and do not in any way reduce forest cover. They scientifically arrange to grow huge plantations, whose tree cover is constantly being renewed. The production process of the paper is also dependent on energy and water. Even the recycling of paper requires more energy than the recycling of plastic. The saving grace about paper is that the resource from which it comes, trees, is renewable. Plastic does not have this advantage ,as the petroleum products from which they are made are dependent on a resource that is limited in nature and is not immediately renewable.

One advantage with paper shopping bags, especially in developing countries, is that their manufacture is quite often a village industry that gives a lot of employment. Even the recycling of paper that is normally made into paper bags is done at the cottage industry level. It is not uncommon to find grocers in these countries handing over your goods to you in bags that have been made out of old newspapers.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Jennifer Madison profile image

      Jennifer Madison 

      6 years ago from Lohmar

      I enjoyed reading this and I learnt some new things about paper shopping bags today. Great article!

    • Karre profile image

      Karre Schaefer 

      6 years ago from Eskridge, Kansas

      Wonderful idea!Great article. Thanks!

    • Reviewsbypat profile image

      Pat Kane 

      6 years ago from Belfast, Ireland

      This idea is genius. Anything that helps the planet, is sustainable and does not burden any other systems, pays for itself in spades.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)