Take a look at your bags

The plastic bag has been the whipping boy of the environmental movement for decades.

The plastic bag has been the whipping boy of the environmental movement for decades. With a ban under way in California, one processor has proven that the plastic sack isn't quite the green nemesis some make it out to be. Kudos to Heritage Plastics, Picayune, Miss., which recently received word that its use of calcium carbonate in its line of PE bags were found to lower emissions and reduce energy consumption, according to a recent Life Cycle Analyses (LCAs), also referred to as “cradle-to-gate analysis.”

Heritage commissioned Boustead Consulting & Associated Ltd, (a third party expert in environmental life-cycle evaluations) to conduct the analysis.  The study concluded that Heritage’s “innovative technology with its performance additive-calcium carbonate (HM10 series) demonstrates (its) ability to significantly reduce anthropogenic greenhouse gases and regional air pollutants (nitrogen oxide, sulphur oxide, and particulates) including significant energy benefits.” Said Holly Hansen, vice president of technical services for Heritage: “While the plastics industry is under scrutiny to prove sustainability, no segment is more heavily examined than the film market. Replacing a portion of the plastics with a natural mineral like calcium carbonate can make a more environmentally friendly bag by reducing carbon emissions as well as reducing the amount of energy required to make the bag.”

Nice to see Heritage taking such a proactive approach. Here's hoping for more of the same.