Bring reusable bags for shopping

Robbe Gilmour, Store Manager, with new, reusable bags being offered at Alaska Commercial Company’s Cordova store. Photo courtesy Shae Bowman/Copper River Watershed Project

In an effort to reduce the amount of disposable, single-use plastic bags used in Cordova, the Alaska Commercial Company is encouraging all customers to bring reusable bags.

Starting June 1, the Alaska Commercial Co. store in Cordova discontinued use of disposable, single-use plastic bags. The store is offering new, reusable bags that are #2 HDPE plastic and made of 40 percent recycled material. Cordova’s city code bans bags that are less than 2.25 mils thick, and these bags are heavier than that and designed for repeated use.

Due to the cost of providing the reusable bags, AC will charge 20 cents per bag, with 10 cents of each bag purchase going to support the Copper River Watershed Project.

Volunteers collect recyclables at a Copper River Watershed Project bi-monthly plastic recycling event at the Alaska Commercial Company store. AC Co. is eliminating single-use plastic bags at its Cordova store. Photo courtesy of the Copper River Watershed Project

The Copper River Watershed Project promotes a salmon-rich, intact watershed and culturally diverse communities by forming partnerships for watershed-scale planning and projects. For the past three years, CRWP and AC Company have been working together to host plastic recycling for #1 and #2 plastic bottles. Plastics collected at these drop-off days are baled by the AC Co. store staff, shipped to Anchorage for consolidation with other AC Co. stores’ recycled materials, and shipped to the Lower 48 for re-processing.

Robbe Gilmour, store manager for AC in Cordova, explained that the Cordova AC Company store is a pilot site in testing the reusable bag system. The AC Company is considering introducing the program in other Alaska communities served by its stores.

Please contact the CRWP if you are interested in volunteering to help with our plastics recycling drop-off days! Call 907-424-3334, or e-mail info@copperriver.org.