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Canvas Bags Beat Paper and Plastic

February 18, 1990

Connie Koenenn's Feb. 4 article, "Is It in the Bag? No Easy Winner in the Paper vs. Plastic Dilemma," was, for the most part, well done. However, I must fault her for neglecting to mention the best alternative of all--canvas. Like many of my friends, I have bought sturdy canvas bags which I use to tote my groceries home from the market. In this way, I completely avoid the paper/plastic quandary.

Although I've been a recycler since the age of 8, I realize that reuse, whenever possible, is preferable to recycling, since recycling uses energy in the processing of materials and the trucks that haul recyclable materials to processing sites contribute to air pollution.

Recycling is better than wasting, but reusing and doing with less--fewer things and less convenience--are the most environmentally sensitive alternatives.

HEIDI ZIOLKOWSKI, Long Beach

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