Are Mesh Tote Bags Really Good for the Environment?

In recent years, many organizations have pushed to reduce plastic bag usage, in order to protect the environment. As a replacement for plastic bags, many stores now give out reusable mesh tote bags.

While one might assume that, since these bags are reusable, they are also better for the environment, studies reveal that this may not be entirely the case.

At the very least, people need to change the way they use reusable mesh tote bags, in order to make them actually environmentally friendly.

Are Mesh Totes Good for the Environment?

For many years, organizations have explained how damaging plastic usage can be to the environment. Not only do plastic bags not degrade easily, but they can also get stuck in the environment as well, making places such as the ocean, for example, a less habitable place for wildlife.

Therefore, reusable mesh tote bags should be the solution, right?

The answer is not so clear, as it turns out. Studies into the subject reveal that mesh tote bags may actually be more damaging to the environment, if they are not used properly.

To explain, plastic bags require very few natural resources to produce, in contrast to mesh tote bags. Furthermore, plastic bags are actually reusable. If someone gets groceries, and then uses the plastic bags they get to line garbage cans, for example, they double the usage of the plastic bag.

Therefore, the environmental problem may actually stem from the fact that people do not reuse their bags. However, this problem is not exclusive to plastic bags.

How to Use Mesh Tote Bags Properly

When used properly, mesh tote bags can be much better for the environment than plastic bags. After all, their material degrades easier than plastic, and they are less likely to get stuck in the environment and damage the habitats of animals.

One of the major appeals of cotton mesh tote bags, and rightfully so, is that they are very reusable. They are sturdy and versatile, allowing for use in a variety of situations after their initial use. However, it is up to people to actually reuse their reusable mesh tote bags. Otherwise, what’s the point of them being reusable at all?

It is not uncommon for many people to realize that they have accidentally accumulated a large collection of mesh tote bags in their closet that they never use. Many stores give them out with every purchase, meaning that if someone shops at a specific store repeatedly, they may acquire a dozen reusable mesh tote bags in no time, almost without realizing it.

So, are mesh tote bags really better for the environment than plastic bags? While studies suggest plastic bags are easier to produce, and are in fact reusable, mesh tote bags can make a big difference, if they are used properly. This does not, however, only mean that people should take their mesh tote bags with them when they shop.

Reusing them at the store is certainly important, but people can go one step further. When moving out of a home, why not use mesh tote bags to carry electrical cables, books, or any other cumbersome items? They can also make great storage for items that people don’t know where to put in the house. If people want to use reusable mesh tote bags to help the environment, then they need to use them as such.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.