I'm a little confused. They are trialling this "user pays" plastic bag system in areas of Victoria. OK.
So who paid for them before? Were they "donated" to us, the consumer? Were Woolies and Coles et al providing them to us as a charitable act? Filed under "donations" in their accounts?
Another of the many examples of how we are getting fucked over financially under the heading of "saving the planet". That list is going to get very long I fear before some common sense is restored (I am an optimist if nothing else).
I agree that plastic bags are really bad for the oceans and waterways in particular. I have nothing against the "enviro" bags (of which I literally have a thousand) it's just that I use the plastic shopping bags I collect for rubbish purposes. If I didn't get these from the supermarket for "FREE" I would just have to buy a bag full of them anyway. So nett benefit for the planet = ZERO. Surely a biodegradable plastic bag with a limited life span (which I'm sure I saw being used a few years ago) would be a better option. Sort of like on Mission Impossible... this plastic bag will self destruction in 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 months...