Shopping Bag Ordinance

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Starting August 1, 2015 large Evanston retailers will no longer offer free disposable plastic shopping bags to customers.  This change follows the ordinance approved by the Evanston City Council on July 28, 2014.  View the approved ordinance.

Ordinance Compliance

Businesses looking to submit a business compliance plan for the ordinance should click below for details.

SUBMIT BUSINESS COMPLIANCE PLAN

Evanston stores larger than 10,000 square feet will be prohibited from distributing point-of-sale disposable plastic shopping bags.  Paper bags as well as plastic bags used to package products in-store, such as produce, meat and other grocery items, are not affected by the ordinance. Additionally, the ordinance does not prohibit customers from using bags of any type brought to the store for their own use.  If you have any questions about the ordinance, please call 311.

Dine-in and take-out restaurants, as well as non-chain stores, are exempt. 

Point-of-sale paper bags as well as plastic bags used to package products in-store, such as produce, meat and other grocery items, are not affected by the ordinance. Additionally, the ordinance does not prohibit customers from using bags of any type brought to the store for their own use. 

Share-a-Bag and Plastic Film Recycling

New Plastic Film Recycling Drop-Offs

In an effort to make plastic recycling more accessible, the City of Evanston will begin offering plastic bag and film packaging recycling drop offs at select locations throughout the city.  The recycling bins will be located at the same facilities providing the Share-a-Bag program bins.

Evanston Share-a-Bag Program

At select locations in Evanston you’ll find Share-a-Bag bins to help provide members of the community with reusable shopping bags.  The Share-a-Bag bins will be located at the same facilities providing plastic bag and film packaging recycling.

At the Share-a-Bag bins you can donate extra reusable shopping bags you may have, or pick up a reusable shopping bag if you are in need of one.

Plastic film recycling and Share-a-Bag will be available these locations:

  • Main Evanston Public Library, 1703 Orrington Ave.
  • North Branch Library, 2026 Central St.
  • Chicago Ave./Main St. Branch Library, 900 Chicago Ave.
  • Morton Civic Center, 2100 Ridge Ave.
  • Chandler-Newberger Center, 1028 Central St.
  • Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd.
  • Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, 1655 Foster St.
  • Levy Senior Center, 300 Dodge Ave.
  • Noyes Cultural Arts Center, 927 Noyes St.
  • Robert Crown Center, 1701 Main St.

At these locations you will be able to recycle all types of plastic film products, which are not recyclable in your normal curbside pickup. The city will be partnering with Trex to make this service possible.

Documents

See the Evanston City Council ordinance approved on July 28, 2014 regulating single-use disposable plastic shopping bags in Evanston.

See the Evanston City Council Agenda Item A7 outlining the proposed single-use disposable plastic shopping bag regulation.

See an Evanston City Council memorandum initiating public discussion regarding disposable plastic shopping bags in May 2014.

Review the presentation on shopping bags from a public meeting held on June 5, 2014 at the Evanston Ecology Center.

Comments and feedback on the City's current discussion around shopping bags can be sent to sustainability@cityofevanston.org.

Read more information about the impact of single-use shopping bags and disposable plastic bag options.