Update on the bag experiment


The bag experiment had seemed to go so long without any significant changes that I found myself visiting it less and less on our trips to Roundrock. I was surprised, then, when Libby and I steered our feet over to it on our last trip and found things in this state.

Notice how the bag on the right is decomposing into shredded strips. This is especially ironic since it was the one for which no claims were made about its biodegrading qualities. The bag on the upper left is also well on the way to nothingness, but the ultimate irony is the bag at the bottom. This one came all the way from the great state of Oregon where I was told it would decompose in a matter of weeks. It’s been there since December of last year, surviving an Ozark winter, spring, and now summer. It’s beginning to shred as well, but it’s not doing nearly as well as its companions.

Compare the three to this post in which they came together for the first time.

I’m not sure how much longer I should let the experiment run. The bag on the right will soon begin blowing around the area, and as I understand it, the molecules themselves will never decay, so there will be litter even if the bag "decomposes."

I also don’t know what conclusions I can draw from this experiment, but I’ll ponder that some.

Missouri calendar:

  • Wild black cherries ripen.

Today in Missouri history:

  • Mormon leaders near Kansas City signed an agreement with the county legislature on this date in 1833 agreeing to leave the area. This was a culmination of many years of ill will, legal redress, and even violence for the area and the persecuted minority.

2 Responses to “Update on the bag experiment”

  1. Duff Says:

    Interesting results with the exoeriment. I suspect the store that touts biodegradable sacks is slightly more expensive than less environmentally conscience competitors. I’m seeing similiar things in the world of outdoor lighting. Many want to wave the “green” flag, talking about LED or Induction lighting. Neither actually saves energy over traditional high intensity discharge lights, but the buzz in my industry makes it sound as though it does. There is a long way to go before LED is practical yet customers are lining up to buy them.
    Sort of like paying a premium for biodegradable bags….

  2. robin andrea Says:

    Very interesting results. Looks like there isn’t really a green aspect to plastic bags no matter what is being touted. That’s disappointing.

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