How long does it take a paper grocery bag to decompose in a landfill?

How long does it take to biodegrade?

According to the February issue of Oprah magazine :

  • It takes a brown paper bag 1 to 5 months to biodegrade;
  • cigarette butts and filters take 12 years;
  • plastic bags, caps and lids take decades;
  • aluminum cans take 2 to 5 centuries; and
  • styrofoam clamshells (the containers take-out food comes in) takes virtually forever.