Looks like Honolulu County will continue bagging with plastic – but only if they’re biodegradable. Mayor Peter Carlisle signed into law yesterday a bill that goes into effect mid-2015. It will also include biodegradable paper bags made of at least 40 percent post-consumer content.

Shop in style when you’re in Hawaii. Use these Hawaiian print or opt for biodegradable plastics and paper bags.

This makes Hawaii the only state in which each county has a plastic bag regulation. Maui and Kauai counties already have bans in place, with Hawaii County and Honolulu County following suit. All counties but Honolulu have a total ban on any kind of plastic, allowing only paper bags or reusable ones instead.

Under the bill, the only nonbiodegradable plastic bags allowed would be those used to package loose produce or to wrap frozen foods, meats, flowers or live fish. The biodegradable plastics, however, are just as durable as nonbiodegradable bags.

Stray bags have become hazards to the environment and end up in the ocean by way of storm drains or streams. It’s not only considered littering but also an endangerment to animals who may mistaken plastics for food.

Remember to pack your reusable bags before your trip to Hawaii or just pick up some Hawaiian print ones while you’re here. You can get them at almost any grocery or specialty stores; they’re nifty and make for great souvenirs!


  1. This is awesome. Finally a state that makes its own rules without intervention from the Federal level. I hope other states take a look at Hawaii and follow suit. Thank you for the article.

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