First US charge for paper or plastic bags
A five cent charge for people using paper or plastic bags has been brought in for all business selling food or alcohol.
And, British firm Marks and Spencer already operate a scheme where all shoppers are charged five pence for every disposable bag they use.
From the start of this year the businesses in Washington DC will also be able to offer customers a rebate of one or two cents if they bring in their own bag, with the remaining three or four cents go to the new Anacostia River Protection Fund.
A spokesman for the mayor's office said: "The cash will be used to provide reusable bags, educate the public about litter, and clean up the river.
"The district has also partnered with CVS/pharmacy to produce and hand out 112,000 reusable bags."
© Faversham House Ltd 2010. edie news articles may be copied or forwarded for individual use only. No other reproduction or distribution is permitted without prior written consent.