No Ziploc for This 6-Year-Old

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by Jane S. Shaw
Canada's National Post reports that a six-year-old boy was not allowed to participate in a lunchtime drawing for  a stuffed teddy bear at his daycare. Why? Because his parents had packed his lunch in a disposable plastic bag rather than reusable Tupperware. "We have to take care of our planet and the bags do not decompose well," the boy's teacher told his unhappy father.

The incident has spurred a "fierce debate" about how far to go in protecting the environment, wrote National Post reporter Tamsin McMahon. There's a debate? Yes, apparently many of the people who commented on the family's blog post agreed with the school's position.  The Post was kind enough to ask for my opinion  (as a coauthor of Facts, Not Fear).  I pointed out that it's extremely difficult to know whether something is environmentally friendly:

Schools should focus on teaching kids the fundamentals of science so that they can explore environmental issues themselves and draw their own informed conclusions as they get older, Ms. Shaw said.
The full story is available here.
Before joining PERC, Jane Shaw was a journalist who had developed an uneasy feeling that much of the commentary about environmental policy that she read--and even some that she wrote--was tilted in the wrong direction. The usual solution to an environmental problem was to turn it over to the government. She had become uncomfortable with this...
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