Introduced just over twenty five years ago, we now consume 500 billion plastic bags annually worldwide. Almost 1 million per minute are given free to shoppers. The facts listed below show the actual costs paid by our environment and society for the convenience of single use plastic bags.

An estimated 12 billion barrels of oil are used to make the 100 billion bags per year that America uses annually.

94,146,133,830 plastic bags have been used this year, and its only March.

The cost of making these bags is passed on to consumers.

Only one in every 200 bags are recycled.

Plastic bags cause over 100,000 sea turtles and other marine life die every year when they mistake them for food.

If the estimated 4 billion plastic bags which end up as rubbish were tied end to end they would encircle the world sixty four times.

High density plastic bags do not degrade, as landfill, they break down into tiny toxic bits and remain, contaminating soil and water for 1,000 years.

In 2002 Southern Ireland introduced a Plas Tax, a plastic bag tax to shops and retailers which reduced consumption of bags by 90%. The British Government has no plans as yet to do the same.

By using a canvas bag in replace of plastic bags you have the capacity to eliminate thousands if not tens of thousands of plastic bags in its lifespan.

http://www.defra.gov.uk/environment/localenv/litter/bags/index.htm