Thank you Hawaii, the first state to officially ban plastic bags. After spending time on the Big Island in Kona, it’s easy to understand why the locals are so accepting and supportive of anti-plastic bag legislation. It’s their lifestyle. Many signs on the island express statements like “leave the sand, it’s the local way” or “do your part to preserve the island” as a reminder of how important it is to honor the Earth’s beauty. And Hawaii makes it easy. There are compost and recycle bins on most busy corners. The streets and beaches are well-kept. Everyone does his or her part to maintain the pristine land. And now, the plastic bag ban. Because of this heightened consciousness, we were moved to avoid all unnecessary plastic, paper and other disposable materials during our stay on the island. Instead of considering the ban of plastic bags as a burden, it’s celebrated and embraced. We get it—as you walk along the beaches and consider the garbage that ends up in the ocean, it’s a tragic injustice to sea animals and the environment—and we commend Hawaii for this bold and critical move.