Laws mandating plastic-bag recycling have been passed in states and cities including Chicago and Tucson, Ariz., and bans have also been approved, according to the American Chemistry Council. Regarding Seattle's failed effort to impose a 20-cent fee on plastic and paper bags, "most Seattle residents already reuse plastic bags, and many also are aware that they can recycle them," said Steve Russell, a vice president of plastics for the ACC.

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