In a shocking bit of irony, it turns out that consumers who have made an effort to reduce the waste caused by the over use of plastic bags at supermarkets by purchasing and using re-usable shopping bags may be exposed to small amounts of lead from those so-called environmentally safe bags.
In what seems like another one of almost daily dire warnings of the harm that the products we come in contact with everyday can cause, the latest on the list is reusable synthetic bags which might contain small traces of lead.
The real worry, however, is not so much that consumers using the bags might come to harm by their exposure to lead, but what will happen when the bags are eventually discarded and begin to accumulate in landfills. Congress and environmental groups are concerned that the trace amounts of lead found in these bags can harm the environment as they begin to decompose in the landfills around the country.
Consumers don’t seem to be too worried, and are continuing to use them, arguing that since the bags are not meant to be tossed by to be used over and over again; and because the amounts of lead are so small, they see little to be really worried about.
Charles Schumer, Democratic Senator from New York disagrees with this permissive attitude.
“When our families go to the grocery store looking for safe and healthy foods to feed their kids, the last thing they should have to worry about are toxic bags,” he said.