Americans’ dependency on plastic shopping bags is a destructive but easily cured addiction. Reusable cloth or recycled paper shopping bags are much better for the planet and all creatures on it. Here’s why: 60,000 plastic bags are consumed in the U.S. every 5 seconds. They are made using non-renewable fossil fuels resources, like oil, which needs to be extracted, processed and transported, adding to the release of carbon dioxide, a dangerous greenhouse gas, into earth’s atmosphere.Plastic bags take huge amounts of energy to manufacture, transport across the country, and recycle. When placed in landfills, they don’t decompose for 400 years. When not recycled, they blow around in the wind, often shredding and ending up in gutters, waterways, and abdomens of wildlife killed by ingesting them. Plastic has so proliferated through our food chain and water supply that 93% of Americans have BPA, a plastic chemical, in their bloodstreams. The chemical is a carcinogen. Reusable cloth or recycled paper shopping bags are much better for the planet and all creatures on it.