Plastic Pollution
March 03 2008

Local Ordinance Update

by Elizabeth

from the Californians Against Waste Newsletter:

Santa Cruz County Moves Towards Going PS-Free
Santa Cruz County is close to becoming the first California county to go totally polystyrene-free. Santa Cruz County and City adopted polystyrene bans this month. Capitola has had a long-standing polystyrene ban. That leaves only two cities in the County where polystyrene takeout packaging is legal.

Action in Los Angeles County
As LA County begins the process of implementing its benchmark-or-ban approach to plastic bags, the Santa Monica City Council has directed its staff to draft the toughest plastic bag ordinance yet. Santa Monica's approach would ban plastic bags at all stores and could potentially require a fee for paper bags. Meanwhile, the City of Los Angeles is scheduled to have a joint committee hearing March 5 to take on several council motions that could potentially ban plastic bags and polystyrene in city limits. The City of Burbank is also contemplating a polystyrene ban. Long Beach has been considering several ordinances for several months.

Not to be outdone, several other Bay Area governments are considering plastic pollution measures. The City of Berkeley is poised to pass a bag ban; a similar ordinance is being considered in San Jose. Sonoma, Mendocino, Monterey and Santa Clara counties are all in the early stages of considering bans or reduction benchmark ordinances for plastic bags. San Mateo County is considering banning polystyrene in County facilities.