No matter where you walk, you’ve probably seen them: little stinky discarded dog poo bags. Sometimes they’re along sidewalks. They’re also in the woods or even tied from tree branches like Christmas ornaments. As no one really wants Mother Nature decorated with these smelly pouches of poo, why do people discard their pet droppings? After all, they went to the trouble of bagging it, why not actually haul it away?
Maybe the offender dropped off the bag with every intention of picking it up on their way back from the walk. But then they went a different way home. Or got distracted and totally forgot.
Maybe the dog owner had no plans on carrying a reeking sack with them on their lovely stroll at all. They figured bagging it was enough of an effort. Someone else can pick it up.
Or maybe bagging and tossing—particularly on a trail—is someone’s mistaken belief that biodegradable bags will quickly break down. Biodegradable bags can be made out of corn or petroleum and contain microorganisms to help break down the bag. But “biodegradable” is merely a marketing term with no standard or legal definition.
A study published in 2019 in the journal Environmental Science and Technology found that several bags that were marketed as "biodegradable" survived in the open air, buried in soil, and submerged in seawater for three years or more. Compostable bags, on the other hand, are made of plant starch. They contain no plastics and are generally more expensive. In the study, the compostable bag dissolved in seawater in three months.
Dogs are eating diets rich in protein and added nutrients that throw the ecosystem out of whack when their poop hits the ground - their poo must be picked up.
#northernbeachescleanupcrew #dog #plastic