FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. (WDVM) — Fairfax County is adopting a 5-cent plastic bag tax beginning Jan. 1 2022.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors adopted this first-ever tax on disposable plastic bags to “influence consumer behavior by discouraging individuals from using single-use disposable plastic bags” to work towards reducing plastic bag pollution in local waterways.

This plastic bag tax will be applied to bags provided for to-go, delivery, curbside pick-up and in-store purchases from grocery, convenience and drug stores within the county.

Fairfax County Supervisor for the Braddock District, James Walkinshaw, talks about the impact of pollution in the area.

“Plastic bag pollution mars our local environment and has a devastating effect on the health of the Chesapeake Bay. This measure will help ensure that our water supply is free of potentially harmful micro-plastics,” said Walkinshaw. “Bringing a reusable bag or declining to have small purchases bagged are simple, smart ways to keep our communities clean.”

Exceptions to this ban are for bags used to wrap or package food to prevent contamination or damage. Some other exceptions are for plastic bags used to carry prescription drugs and dry cleaning. More exceptions will include pet waste, leaf removal or garbage bags.

For more information on the plastic bag tax, click here.

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