POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Mar 6, 2011
PAGO PAGO, American Samoa » American Samoa officials have told more than 100 businesses to stop distributing plastic bags in compliance with the U.S. territory's new law banning the sacks.
The "stop orders" were issued as inspectors visited more than 300 stores and businesses during the first week of the law that took effect Feb. 23, said Nathan Mease, legal counsel for the American Samoa Environmental Protection Agency. About 70 percent of stores are complying, he said.
"We are very pleased with the cooperation the local businesses have shown," he said, explaining that customers may still use the plastic shopping bags they already own.
The law prohibits only the distribution of plastic shopping bags by stores and businesses.
Stores are now giving their customers boxes, paper bags and cloth bags, instead of plastic.