If you remember, plastic bags were banned effective March 1, then the pandemic hit, and stores had plastic bags again. Now the DEC has announced that they will begin enforcing the plastic bag ban starting in the middle of next month.

The DEC will start enforcing the State's ban on single-use plastic carryout bags on October 19, 2020. The ban has not been enforced due to an agreement between parties in a lawsuit.

DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said:

The Court’s decision is a victory and a vindication of New York State’s efforts to end the scourge of single-use plastic bags and a direct rebuke to the plastic bag manufacturers who tried to stop the law and DEC’s regulations to implement it. As we have for many months, DEC is encouraging New Yorkers to make the switch to reusable bags whenever and wherever they shop and to use common-sense precautions to keep reusable bags clean. The Court has ruled and DEC will begin to enforce the ban on October 19th. It’s time to BYOBagNY

The DEC is encouraging New York residents to bring reusable bags when they go out shopping with the #BYOBagNY campaign, which was launched earlier this year.

According to a press release from the DEC, New Yorkers use an estimated 23 billion plastic bag each year, and roughly 85 percent of that very large number, ends up in landfills.

For more information regarding the plastic bag ban, visit the DEC's website.