I am a student at Bennington College. I want to detail the efforts Vermont has taken to mitigate plastic pollution. Despite some states reversing bans on plastic bags during the pandemic, Vermont passed a ban on stores providing plastic bags at check-out.
There have been pushes to reintroduce plastic bags during the pandemic to mitigate infection rates, but I think it is important to realize that allowing plastic bags does not significantly mitigate viral transmission. It is known that viruses do not survive well on organic surfaces and COVID-19 is mostly spread by respiratory droplets and rarely by transmission from touching objects. The push to reinstate plastic bags is beneficial to companies that produce high amounts of plastic, but the idea that plastic bags could help reduce COVID-19 transmission is not based on fact.
I am thankful Vermont maintained this ban on plastic bags during the pandemic when other states were allowing them.