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Gate City Bank gives away reusable shopping bags

Gate City Bank is providing an easy way to help the environment by offering another 100,000 free reusable shopping bags to the public. These bags are in addition to the 300,000 bags that Gate City Bank has already given away over the past two years. The public is invited to visit any Gate City Bank location to pick up their free reusable shopping bags.

"Gate City Bank is committed to providing a better way of life for the communities we serve," said Steve Swiontek, Gate City Bank Chairman, President, and CEO. "Giving away these reusable shopping bags is just one way that Gate City Bank can help to improve the environment in our communities. The reusable shopping bags continue to be very well received by our customers and community members, and we are happy to assist those individuals who are dedicated to taking care of our environment."

Gate City Bank's bags are 100% recyclable and made with water-repellant materials so they avoid bacteria and foul odor.

Gate City Bank offers a variety of products and services that help its customers to conduct their banking in an environmentally friendly manner, including free online bank statements (available for seven years) and free online bill payment and presentment for all personal checking account customers.

In addition, Gate City Bank is environmentally responsible in its everyday business activities. Environmental friendliness is considered during all purchasing decisions, and whenever possible, the bank uses LED light blubs, recycles paper and toner, prints on recycled paper with soy ink, uses energy efficient appliances, cleans with environmentally friendly cleaning supplies, and utilizes energy reducing building methods.

Some interesting environmental facts reveal that:

*Each Gate City Bank reusable shopping bag carries the same capacity as 3-4 plastic bags.

*The petroleum needed to manufacture 14 plastic bags could drive a car one mile.

If each of the 400,000 bags Gate City Bank is giving away was used for only one trip to the grocery store, the petroleum saved could fuel a car for 100,000 miles or four times around the center of the earth.

*The average family accumulates 60 plastic bags in only four trips to the grocery store.

*Americans use an estimated 100 billion plastic bags every year, which require an estimated 12 million barrels of oil to manufacture.

*Plastic bags may take up to 1,000 years to decompose in landfills. Even when they do break down, they are not really gone - they simply break apart into even smaller pieces.

*It takes more than four times as much energy to manufacture a paper bag than it does to manufacture a plastic bag. Most paper comes from tree pulp, so forests need to be cut down to produce paper bags.

*Although paper bags have a better recycling rate than plastic bags, each new paper shopping bag is made mostly from new tree pulp for better strength and elasticity.

A $1.1 billion mutual community bank, Gate City Bank has been providing banking services since 1923. Gate City Bank has 32 convenient offices across North Dakota and Minnesota, and employs more than 400 people.