Cities increasingly ban or tax plastic shopping bags Cities and territories are combating litter by banning or taxing plastic shopping bags, despite the recent defeat of a statewide ban in california. Bans take effect in january in brownsville, texas, and hawaii's kauai and maui counties.In february, american samoa's ban goes into effect. Plastic bags are already outlawed ichaeloronline in san francisco and other california cities malibu, fairfax and palo alto as well as westport, conn. ;Bethel, alaska;And edmonds, wash.This month, a ban in north carolina's outer banks was expanded from large retailers to all stores. "There's going to be another explosion of local ordinances,"Says bryan early of californians against waste, an environmental group that supported a state ban.He says some local governments warned they would move ahead with bans if the legislature rejected a statewide ban, which it did aug.31. Despite legal challenges from the save the plastic bag coalition, early says bans are in the works in los angeles county, san jose, santa monica, santa cruz, berkeley michael kors bags cheap and santa clara county. Environmentalists such as early target plastic bags, arguing most take decades to decompose and are recycled less often than paper bags. The american chemistry council, which represents plasticbag makers and opposed california's ban, argues that instore recycling makes more sense than a ban. "You eliminate the ability to recycle plastic bags"When you ban or tax them, says keith christman, managing director of the group's plastic markets.He says a ban also puts plastic workers out of a job. Christman says most michael kors bags cheap proposed bans or taxes don't succeed.He cites seattle's 20centbagfee proposal, which voters rejected last year. Aside from north carolina's ban in the outer banks, none of the plastic bag bans or fees proposed in 11 other states in the past two years have passed, according to the national conference of state legislatures. "This issue is not going away,"Says ronald fong, ceo of the california grocers association, an industry group that backed california's proposed ban. "The future is in reusable bags. "