FREE “Go Green” Reusable Shopping Bags

Being that I am a Riverside Public Utilities (RPU) customer, I stopped in and picked up my FREE “Go Green” reusable shopping bag today from the “Utilities Plaza” at 3460 Orange Street (a couple blocks north of the Mission Inn). 

These reusable bags are 100% polypropylene (PP) which is non-toxic, allergy-free, and non-reactive to human skin — and are available on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last.  Thankfully there are still some available.  Hurry down to pick up YOUR bag!

I can’t wait to go grocery shopping tonight and use my reusable shopping bag –something I’ve encouraged all of us to do in an article in our Aug/Sept 2008 Chit Chat newsletter!  The reusable shopping bags are washable, and each bag holds the equivalent of 3-4 plastic bags or 2 paper bags.  Some local stores offer discounts to customers who use reusable bags (I’ll keep you posted as to which stores offer this discount during my shopping sprees).

Are you aware that Americans use over 14 billion plastic bags annually, and the petroleum in just 14 plastic bags could drive a car one mile?  Additionally, paper bags do NOT biodegrade in landfills and it takes 70% more global warming gasses to make a paper bag than a plastic bag, which is something I was shocked to hear.  All these years when I’ve been asked, “paper or plastic?”, I’ve always chosen paper, thinking that paper would biodegrade faster than plastic, when the truth is: nothing really biodegrades in a modern landfill. Yuck!

Modern landfills lack the oxygen and other conditions, like sunlight and water, that would allow paper bags and other natural materials to biodegrade.  Landfills pile waste upon waste, blocking air, light and water.  Trash becomes compacted by its own weight until it is a solid mass.  The only liquid is not water but a toxic seep, contaminated by the inks on plastic bags as well as by other toxins. 

Riverside Public Utilities is giving away FREE “Go Green” reusable shopping bags to customers at the following facilities:

  • Downtown Utilities Plaza (3460 Orange Street)
  • Casa Blanca Customer Resource Center (3025 Madison Street)
  • Utilities Administration Building (3901 Orange Street)

For more information about this giveaway, contact Riverside Public Utilities at (951) 826-5485. For additional information about reusable shopping bags, visit

And for those of you reading this who live outside of Riverside, encourage your City to participate (if they aren’t already) in such an honorable environmental endeavor!

Happy “green” shopping!  —April Glatzel

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