Simon Review Paper #58


The need to address single-use plastic bag damage to our environment has grown exponentially across the globe. States and communities are taking legislative action to address the harm produced through the form of taxation and/or plastic bag bans. This paper provides insight into the contradictory evidence that is cited in favor or opposition to such legislation across the globe. Further, this paper seeks to determine the positions of Illinois citizens on their willingness to support a state-wide tax or ban on all plastic shopping bags received from retail establishments through the use of public opinion polling. Finally, the impacts of such legislation on key demographic groups of citizens are provided along with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on plastic bag usage. This research provides a foundation for which environmental public policy can utilize citizens’ opinions to inform the decision-making process.