Environmental activists welcome the new law but caution that exemptions will weaken its effect.
New York targets its throwaway culture this weekend with a ban on single-use plastic bags that has been years in the making and is still rare in America.
New Yorkers like to see themselves at the forefront of efforts to save the environment but are used to receiving groceries in free plastic bags, often doubled up to ensure sturdiness.
Today, that will change when New York becomes only the third US state to outlaw the non-biodegradable sacks blamed for choking rivers, littering neighbourhoods and suffocating wildlife.
Environmental activists welcome the new law but caution that exemptions will weaken its effect, while some small businesses worry the ban might negatively impact their profits.
New York uses 23 billion plastic bags every year, according to the government. About 85 per cent are thrown away, ending up in landfills, and on streets and beaches, it says.
Source ; News Agencies