Asked by: Cipriana Wess
asked in category: General Last Updated: 2nd February, 2020

Why did we switch from paper to plastic bags?

Plastic bags were invented as an alternative to paper grocery bags in the late 1970s to protect trees and prevent clear-cutting of our forests. Plastic bags are a by-product of natural gas extraction and provide an environmental solution to the burn off of this gas during the refining process.

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People also ask, when did we switch from paper to plastic?

In 1982, two of the biggest supermarket chains in the US – Safeway and Kroger – switched to plastic bags and by the end of the decade they almost replaced paper bags around the whole world.

Likewise, why is it better to use paper bags than plastic bags? 'Four times as much energy' The manufacturing process, according to the research, also produces a higher concentration of toxic chemicals compared with making single-use plastic bags. The study found paper bags needed to be reused at least three times, one fewer than plastic bags for life (four times).

Also, why did we stop using paper bags?

That's because, while paper breaks down much faster under ideal conditions, landfills are not ideal conditions. Paper bags generate 70 more air pollutants than plastic. They generate 50 times more water pollutants than plastic. It takes 91 percent less energy to recycle a plastic bag than it does a paper bag.

What did we use before plastic bags?

Before the invention of plastic, the only substances that could be molded were clays (pottery) and glass. Hardened clay and glass were used for storage, but they were heavy and brittle. Some natural substances, like tree gums and rubber, were sticky and moldable.

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