QLD Plastic Bag Ban: 3 Months on, How Are You Going?

Hows everyone coping? I found 3 plastic bags while cleaning the garage today and was pretty happy with myself. Made my Weekend a bit better.

I remember grocery bags around 50% of the time now, getting better at keeping a cooler bag & bags in the back of the car permanently.

Anyone found a suitable replacement for small trash cans? All the liners I can find are too big.


  • +10

    I’ve been throwing a lot of things that don’t need plastic lining into one bin, and anything that does require lining, using packaging from products, like bread bags (without holes), or chip bags or biscuit bags. I find a lot of things don’t actually need lining to begin with so even if the packaging is small that seems to be enough.

  • +4

    $1 Bin liners from Kmart or $2 from aldi.

    • +5

      Make sure you put your bag of bin liners into a bag when you are at Kmart for an extra bin liner.

      • +1

        Double bag the bin liner. Just in case.

  • +4

    Really only 3 months? Has it been that hard for the rest of us who've had them banned for up to 10 years? Thankfully everywhere except the big supermarkets give out free biodegradable plastic bags.

    • +12

      Biodegradable bags don't really biodegrade in landfills, and they're still bad for the environment especially if they end up in stream, river, lake or something.

      • +1

        Hence the italics.

        • +7

          Thanks for clearing that up…

        • +6

          Why aren't you using quotation marks?

          • +2


            Why aren't you using quotation marks?

            Because that's not how he rolls? :)

          • @kururii: Yeah, italics suggests the word is important not incorrect. It comes of as smugly bragging they're biodegradable where quotation marks would suggest they're biodegradable in name only.

      • Depending on their construction, they're still banned. The bill specifies bags based on their material weight, not what they're made from.

    • +1

      Hopefully this will spur companies into developing real biodegradable bags as there will be a market out there for them.

      • +1

        Not really possible.

        You need oxygen to biodegrade something, in a water way the oxygen is removed from the water and thus the things living in the water now have less oxygen to breathe.

  • +27

    It's going pretty poorly.

    I've joined a north Brisbane sub-branch of Qld wide support group for people not dealing with the plastic bag ban.

    There are dozens of us

    • This guy reddits

  • +23

    I hoarded bags before the ban and still have heaps of the "contraband".

    But some changes are:

    • keeping spare bags in vehicle (burns extra fuel so is probably worse for the environment as before the ban)
    • not buying as much stuff if I forgot to bring a bag into the shop
    • going to shops much more often as I am buying less each trip (probably worse for environment as before the ban)
    • emptying rubbish bag into wheelie bin and using it again as a rubbish bag
    • reusing some packaging as a rubbish bin and then putting it directly into the wheelie bin
    • +18

      keeping spare bags in vehicle (burns extra fuel so is probably worse for the environment as before the ban)


      • +15

        Think wearing socks would burn more fuel lol

        • +1

          So would wearing clothes!

    • +7

      I'd like to know how much fuel a couple of plastic bags would burn. They're like 5g?

      • -1

        Depends how far you drive them. But I drive them EVERYWHERE. And if most of us are doing this then we are collectively transport tonnes of extra plastic trillions of km. Especially considering most of us are using the thicker, heavier bags.

        • +2

          If you consider walking some places instead of driving then you could be even more environmentally friendly and fitter too. Public transport is an option as well. I’m willing to bet there are plenty of other things you can strip out of your car to offset reusable bags. Have a look in your glove box, boot, console and door storage compartments. I think you might be reaching with this argument.

          • +1

            @try2bhelpful: Well in my case I use a motorbike, but I have a car too and its very empty except some contraband old plastic bags.

            • @inherentchoice: Surely you “ride”motorbikes. I don’t believe your car is that bereft of extras you can’t offset some bags. I carry spare reusable bags in my small crumpler bag and they take up little room, including this great backpack I got in the US. Haven’t found it out here and US shipping is outrageous.


              It is just a matter of being prepared.

      • Depends if you use them for parachute brakes.

    • +32

      Take a pee before you drive, this will not only offset the weight of the bags, but also more, hence you will save fuel. A true bargain.

      • +7

        But keeping in the pee and poop for work is more economical because you save a flush. Need to think about the flow on effects!

        • +1

          You mean to tell me that you haven't dug a long drop in your back yard???

          • +2

            @AdosHouse: I'm a nice neighbour, and I leave it in my neighbour's front yard to help their daisies grow.

        • Piss in the shower, if ur drain is removable ……

  • +2

    "keeping spare bags in vehicle (burns extra fuel so is probably worse for the environment as before the ban)"


  • +15

    Its unhygienic - blood and leakage from meat and fish contaminates so called reuseable bags ruining the bags and contaminating your other produce.

    Its the worst piece of anti-consumer legislation implemented, designed solely to save millions for grasping billionaire businesses - all 3 of them.

    • The greens love it.

    • +2

      Agree, I haven't yet worked out a suitable system to allow the bags to keep getting used long enough to be worth while.
      Agree meat leakage, but also things like that dusty residue on the outside of washing powder boxes and other chemicals - plus on the outside the trolleys often look so filthy over time its just adding up like these 'reusable' bags are not going to go the distance. Best one yet, people seem to be packing more in them and ruining produce - a checkout operator piled heaps of stuff on my eggs 2 weeks ago and we lost 4 eggs and made a mess… not going to re-use a salmonella rotten egg bag!
      I am confident I will work something out but will have come up with a plan.

      • If only households were supplied with fresh water that could be used to wash things!

    • You're not coping then?

      • +8

        In SA we got rid of them over 2 years ago & there was no free bags to give out due to the change they had washable bags in a small pouch that fit 8 in there & our stores dont care who's bags you bring in to the shops I just don't understand why people are complaining about this . We never put up sutch a fuss about it

    • There are plenty of options for lined bags to avoid the leakage issues, you just need to pack them separately. We’ve been taking our own bags a long time before the ban and have never had an issue.

      • +1

        Good for you - unfortunately I am very busy and organising 6 bags to take shopping and having to wash 2 of them every other day is virtually impossible for me.

        The supermarkets introduced single use bags to save money, and now save even more by providing nothing. More profit at the consumers expense.

        • +2

          You don’t need to wash bags every day, how often do you shop? It is not hard to take your own bags and sort yourself out. I always carry reusable bags in my small crumpler bag and am ready to go when I want to purchase something. Not sure how you think the supermarkets were saving money by providing single use bags, but they were, probably, enticing people to spend more by providing them. Like all the other changes in life it just takes organisation and being prepared to try something new. I look at this as I look at a new responsibility at work, just something to sort out until it is just something else I do.

          • -1

            @try2bhelpful: you don't wash off stale chicken blood or fish juice when they leak?

            they saved money by making the bags thinner, and rubbish handles.

            I suggest you try something new, think harder about why thinner things are cheaper.

            • @petry: I don’t carry home meat, fish, chicken etc from the markets every day, do you? If so, maybe you need to think about buying in bulk - at least for the week. Maybe if you are having leakage problems you need to take extra thick freezer bags. We use ziploc ones and rewash them for reuse. Thinner things are not always cheaper, many of the elegant thin watches are much cheaper than their chunky brethren.

              • @try2bhelpful: jeez you cant properly clean ziplock bags, they cost money 2 and finally why the hell should I have to plan an everyday shopping trip like a military expedition because some greedy bastards want 10 homes?

                you can't see the reality of this garbage so I leave to your dream that somehow this is a good thing when in fact its just nothing but an annoyance that has done more harm than good.

                • @petry: You can clean ziploc bags, I haven’t got food poisoning yet. Carrying bags isn’t mounting a military expedition it is a minor inconvenience. We can agree to disagree on this but we will let history decide if this makes a difference to the environment. Humans rarely change until they are pushed; as history has shown. If people really want rubbish bags then a suitable alternative will be developed, if they don’t then the noise will die down to a grumble. People got on OK before plastic shopping bags were developed. Maybe we just need to ask Granny what she used to do.

    • +3

      Yeah I am hesitating to order delivered groceries since the delivery guy asked me to give him back the bags next time - does that mean the bags I get my groceries in have been used?

    • +1

      Its unhygienic - blood and leakage from meat and fish contaminates so called reuseable bags ruining the bags and contaminating your other produce.

      And if you do launder them you have to take into account the electricity, detergent and water you are using. Not exactly a greener option.

      Do as I do: go into the fruit/veg section and take some bag to wrap your meat in. Given the millions these companies are saving they can spare me a few extra fruit/veg bags.

    • +1

      I agree its rubbish legislation (pun intended), but I don't agree its got anything to do with profits… I don't think plastic bags cost them a hell of a lot in the scheme of things, and actually they resisted implementing it for years due to concern over the impact on their profits. Supermarkets don't want people holding back on what they spend because they came in only intending to get a few things and so only brought in a couple of reusable bags, rather they are retail marketers - they are all about impulse buys, encourage spending by making it convenient, place trolleys and baskets around, put chocolate bars where you grab them on the way out, position products for impulse buys and where kids can grab them, putting complimentary products near each other, plenty of bags to take lots of things… plus its slowing checkouts down, that costs them money too as they have to hire more people to process and put in more self-checkouts etc. Delays get people frustrated and they also don't have a pleasant experience - not at all an easy decision for them that's why Coles and Woolies had to do it as the same time to avoid backlash by switching one to the other.

      They gave the old bags away for free because they wanted customers to buy buy buy, it was only pressure put on them why they charge to encourage people to re-use as they have an economic cost to the consumer. Some media footage of a 're-usable' bag in the drain on TV and Coles had to drop their late announcement they were extending free bag policy that was aimed at double-crossing Woolies and stealing market share.

      Its certainly not designed 'solely to save millions' - it was environmental push for sure.

  • +10

    It's interfering with my sex life. Taking off a condom and placing it the wheelie bin and then running back in to the house has taken the fun out of it especially when the front door self locks and I have to wait till the missus puts something on to open the door

    • +8

      haven't you learnt anything out of this whole saga? you are supposed to reuse things!

      • +7

        I'll turn it inside out next time and make it ribbed for my pleasure

    • +2

      A condom is extravagant and just gonna make your palms oily. You only need a tissue

      • +6

        I say no to palm oil.

    • +2

      A true Ozbargainer would save the dollars and just use the pullout method.

      • +1

        More expensive in the long run…

        • If you have a problem with the pull-out method, you can just fall back on the OzBargain backup method, bikies.

  • +1

    We have small bins in the bathrooms and we use the plastic wrappers from the toilet rolls. You could also look at dry dog food bags, delivery bags from online orders etc.

  • Keep a box of these eBay bags in the car and then reuse them as bin liners

    • 1500 bags….. wow

      • How good would it look to C&C these from your local Woolies and you open it up and hold up a stack of the bags saying "Thanks guys!" making it look like they are selling it to you.

  • +5

    Honestly the biggest joke of of past few years.

    Most people just buy tougher 'non-single-use' ones at a cost. These cost more to produce, are worse for the environment and still end up in landfill.

    Stpid policy yet people still vote for the moronic Greens (yes I know it had bipartisan support, I just hate the green influence).

    If it actually helped the environment I wouldn't mind, but people are not going to change their ways, therefore, it doesn't and it's a joke.

    • +13

      People used to dump their raw sewerage into the streams in the major cities, tends not to happen so much now. They removed lead from petrol. Asbestos has been phased out. Smoking is no longer acceptable in trains, workplaces, restaurants etc. Everytime the changes were made people yelled the sky if falling.

      People do change, they just need the right incentive and time. Alternatives will occur, but the incentive was never there, now it is.

      • But it’s not there. Proof is in people’s actions.

        • The incentive is there. If bags will, once again, be available at the supermarket it will be in a form that is properly biodegradable. There is a desire for these bags but, currently, the cost is too high on the environment. If they can come up with something that is more "cost effective" on a number of levels then this product will have a market. People are smart when they want to be, but they need the incentive. A fair number of people used to get blind drunk and then speed home; a few laws, some advertising and the death toll for Victoria is now a 3rd it was at it's highest. Yes, cars have also improved but there are a lot more people on the roads as well. Also, people don't go into a corner and piss into a chamber pot anymore, well at least the people I know anyway. As you have so rightly pointed out, the proof is in people's actions.

          • +1

            @try2bhelpful: … and the bin liners people are buying? What about the bread wrappers, dog food bags, condoms, pvc bottles, chip wrappers, coffee pods, etc, when will they start to be more biodegradable too. I am all for effective change, but this whole bag debacle makes more dollars than sense.

            • +2

              @DisabledUser152521: Starting points. The bags are used for a very short time to carry things home and, if you are lucky, for people to put their rubbish in. That is not a good enough reason to have them. I agree that all that other rubbish has to be dealt with as well, but you need to eat the elephant a bit at a time. When smoking bans started it was at work and trains, it took decades to get it to restaurants and bars.

      • +4

        Now they use mobile phones and other electronics made with gold,lead,lithium,aluminum,colbalt,nickel,copper,silver,plastics,real earths and zinc. Some of which are mined with slave labour and smelted. Then there is the dubious production process and transportation. So are you going to stop buying mobiles phones?

        • +2

          Useless whataboutery.
          Should we not try to resolve any single problem because there are many others? That will surely get us nowhere.

          • +2

            @Gnosh: I’m all for tackling the problem… the ban doesn’t actually solve anything, that’s the point, it’s just making people ‘feel better’ instead of solving anything. Looking into the actually stats, it’s actually making the issue WORSE. That’s my point. That’s why it’s a joke

        • People aren’t throwing out their mobile phones, everyday, and the phones are a product in themselves not a single use wrapping. Mobile phones are also collected for recycling, reuse at a number of places.

            • @Ozbargainite: Still would be less of an issue than plastic bags.

              • @try2bhelpful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_UdqZdFr-w

                This is not though, I do believe our constant phone upgrading needs to be tackled as a priority, as it it killing beyond repair an increasing larger piece of our planet. The new bags are still going in landfill and take even longer to break down, no one is disagreeing we need change. The current change is not effective and is tackling the problem from the wrong end. We could have recycled paper bags as an option, why arent they, I would pay a premium for paper sacks. we could ban commercial bin liners and force people to recycle their thinner supermarket bags as liners too, rather than people resorting to using thick less degradable bags as is now the option.

                • @DisabledUser152521: I agree we want an alternative to the bags but that won’t come until the old bags are removed and there is sufficient pressure for the new bags - either that or we find alternatives to the bags. I don’t need the bags for carrying groceries, I’m happy with the reusable ones. My quibble is the rubbish bag use. I would like properly degradable versions of these but, whilst the alternative was available, it wasn’t being addressed. You don’t actually need the rubbish bags, you just need to clean your bins more so we live with the inconvenience until the next technology comes along. My phone is now 4 years old, I don’t upgrade that often.

      • +2

        carry on trolling -millions of plastic bags are still here its only supermarkets. They introduced single use bags and won't provide reusable as they used to for no cost.

        Dream on about incentive for working people - the incentive was to make more profit for the supermarkets. Reckon doing away with birds altogether would stop everyone having to clean up birdshit. No birdshit seems like a good incentive to eradicate a species…and eradicating the human race would save the planet, so genocide has an incentive… reading this shit I can see its overdue.

      • next month can and bottle 10cent thing come in.

      • +1

        Not all change is good. They first put lead into petrol. And they started using asbestos. Maybe one day we'll look back and see this was a great idea. Or maybe we'll look back and realise we're all idiots like how we think about the people who introduced cane toads into Australia to deal with cane beetles.

        Hell, it's happening right now. Think E10 petrol is environmentally friendly? Yeah..


        That is because the land required to plant fast-growing poplar trees and tropical grasses will displace food crops, and so drive deforestation to create more farmland, a powerful source of carbon emissions.

        And worse?

        A related study, also published in the journal Science, says the United Nations had exaggerated carbon savings from biofuels and biomass, in a mistake copied by the European Union in its cap and trade law, by ignoring deforestation and other land use changes.

        The study says the mistake was carried into US climate legislation as well, and would worsen as governments put a price on carbon, driving the use of bio

        Which is exactly what's happening here, people just jumping on the latest, trendy, feel-good, emotionally-satisfying bandwagon instead of actually thinking things through. Or worse, thinking it through but being too dumb to actually do that usefully.

        • +2

          I agree not all change is good - like the people who decided to introduce the plastic bags in the first place. The amount of rubbish that goes into delivering products to us is just staggering. I would love to have supermarkets where you can get refills for your shampoo, etc to cut down the wastage. So many of these even have the pumps with every container instead of just a new refill. We do need to think smarter and reducing packaging is a good place to start.

          • +1


            I agree not all change is good - like the people who decided to introduce the plastic bags in the first place.

            You completely missed the point. There's no evidence - one way or the other, that disposable plastic bags are net-good or net-bad. Consider other disposable things - disposable gloves at the dentist? Goes into the trash, arguably better than using non-disposable gloves and having to wash+sterilize them. Or disposable [anything] made of paper (instead of more durable, less biodegradable things). Flip side? Those disposable paper things if incorrectly sourced can lead to greater deforestation and resource waste.

            The entire bloody point is that there almost never is an easy and simple answer. And yet you jump straight to: "Oh yeah plastic bags are obviously a bad idea."

            Sometimes, things which seem to be intuitively correct - or seem to be the trendy, obviously bandwagon to jump on - aren't always true. We have science for a reason, and the only studies we did on this issue was "Oh look, this city jumped into doing this without proper consideration and they haven't sunk into the ocean yet, let's follow their example like frekn lemmings."

            • +1

              @HighAndDry: I don’t see how cutting back on packaging waste is causing damage to the environment. The science on this is that this type of plastic is damaging. Given we have a fair amount of history prior to the introduction of these bags I think we can say that Science is against them. Nobody says that Asbestos is worth the trouble, nor lead in petrol, nor dumping sewerage into drinking water. I’m sure history will say that excessive packaging will fall into this category. Not a bandwagon a scientific fact.

              • @try2bhelpful:

                Nobody says that Asbestos is worth the trouble, nor lead in petrol, nor dumping sewerage into drinking water.

                NOW no one says asbestos is good, or lead in petrol.

                But at the time? Asbestos was natural, good for fire retardation, which was (and remains) unsurprisingly a big issue when it comes to building material in increasingly dense cities. Probably saved quite a few lives before non-asbestos equally fire retardant materials were discovered.

                And lead in petrol? It improved octane ratings (so efficiency - burning less gasoline per mile), and reduced knocking and wear and tear on engines letting them operate for longer (saving resources). At the time this was a no-brainer and you would be wasteful if you opposed it.

                The entire point is this hubris of "Oh we know better now that this one thing is the obvious thing to do."

        • Funny how you used examples of STARTING to use lead and asbestos as change, rather than STOPPING to use them. Stopping was a good change, no?

        • I should add that reusable shopping bags aren't exactly the latest trend… There's been policies in place in Europe for yonks. They are evidence based and haven't been reverted, but hey I'm sure the Australian public know better!

          • @bringbring:

            They are evidence based

            I'm sure they looked as much into the evidence before implementing the policies as the Australian state governments did here.

            It's not as if Europe was also sure that witches existed at one point, thought the Treaty of Versailles was a good idea, have proven literally incapable of protecting their own borders or ensuring energy independence (from Russia of all people)… but yeah I'm sure they're totally 100% right on this because you want them to be. Gotta have faith right?

            Funny how you used examples of STARTING to use lead and asbestos as change, rather than STOPPING to use them. Stopping was a good change, no?

            Seriously, you're going to fixate on "starting" vs "stopping"? Yeah, sure - let's stop other artificial things we've started too, like vaccines (autism!), contraception (not the Lord's plan!), fluorine in water supplies (mind control!), iodine in salt (…I got nothing here, sorry).

            Yeah, remind me to ignore any other 'bright ideas' you might come up with.

            • -1

              @HighAndDry: 'Seriously' dude, I have a PhD. Don't go all reductio ad absurdum on me.

              • @bringbring: And yet you're going all 'appeal to authority' here? Please. I'm willing to bet any PhD you have isn't worth the 50gsm paper it's printed on.

    • There is only one green member in QLD parliament. It's a unicameral parliament with labor as the majority. Even if Greens could vote for or against it, to doesn't matter. All you need is 47 votes to pass legislation, Labor has 48.

      So next time you post, just read a the picture captions on the Wikipedia page. Okay?

      • lol read my disclaimer.

      • yep but the chook wants all the plastic for her dildos

  • Living In a town which only has one rubbish bin.
    I don't see the point of this "green" policy.

  • +3

    No plastic bags in SA for years. Sure it's a slight hassle to remember to put the bags back in the boot after unloading but really it must have saved thousands of plastic bags by now just from our family. I really can't see what the fuss is about.

  • +2

    At the supermarket I just take a box off the shelf and use that. Just like I've always done at Aldi.

    • +1

      The last time I took a box from the shelf, the alarm rang as I went out the door because apparently you're meant to pay for the box of cereal. Should have been more specific about that box you're talking about!

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