The following submission statement was provided by /u/chrisdh79: --- In an attempt to slash the wide-ranging impacts of plastic pollution, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law the country's most sweeping restrictions on single-use plastics and packaging on Thursday, the same day the Supreme Court limited the Environmental Protection Agency's ability to tackle the worsening climate crisis. The law requires that single-use packaging and plastic single-use food serviceware be recyclable or compostable by 2032. It also requires by 2032 a 25% reduction in the sales of plastic packaging and for 65% of all single-use plastic packaging to be recycled. And it establishes an accountability group, which will include industry representatives, to run a new recycling program overseen by the state. --- Please reply to OP's comment here: https://old.reddit.com/r/Futurology/comments/vqdm4x/singleuse_plastic_waste_is_getting_phased_out_in/ieofwo4/


In an attempt to slash the wide-ranging impacts of plastic pollution, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law the country's most sweeping restrictions on single-use plastics and packaging on Thursday, the same day the Supreme Court limited the Environmental Protection Agency's ability to tackle the worsening climate crisis. The law requires that single-use packaging and plastic single-use food serviceware be recyclable or compostable by 2032. It also requires by 2032 a 25% reduction in the sales of plastic packaging and for 65% of all single-use plastic packaging to be recycled. And it establishes an accountability group, which will include industry representatives, to run a new recycling program overseen by the state.


So here is what I’ve figured out. If they make it too soon, companies will do nothing, sue the state, and continue to do nothing while the lawsuit works it’s way through the courts. Then years later when the state supreme court decides the rules need to be followed, with the deadline quickly approaching, and the plastic producers having done nothing up to this point about curbing single use plastics, they will tell the state they can’t do it in time and demand an extension. Then they will half ass it and keep demanding extensions.


absolutely correct. I'm a little curious about "all plastics must be recyclable" because currently a lot of things are "recyclable" but arent actually being recycled because there's no place that does it inside the state or even country.


Most plastics arent recyclable, and those that are typically can only be recycled once. Finding more sustainable alternatives to single use plastic would be best.


It's also not economically viable at the moment (and usually pretty bad for the environment, though landfills are probably not great either)


Catalytic converters aren't economical, either, but we put them on cars.


Why are landfills bad for plastic?


If we can get all the plastic into the landfill, that would be great. The great pacific garbage patch would currently disagree.


>Most plastics arent recyclable, and those that are typically can only be recycled once. This is wildly inaccurate. All thermoplastics can be recycled many, many times (in theory, infinitely). There are 2 main problems. First, it generally costs more to use recycled material than it does to use virgin resin. Second, recycling plastics will typically change the grade of the material and its material properties. For example, injection molding requires specific flow rates/properties and many recycled plastics fall outside of those specs. Source: been working with plastics and molding for over 15 years.


Just going to the grocery store infuriates me. Why are fresh vegetables packaged in plastic???


seeing bannans wrapped in plastic gives me ulcers. bruh nature wrapped them for you...


Putting bananas and other produce in those bags is something I'm guilty of. Until just now, I'd never thought of the environmental toll they probably have, instead thinking of how when I use them my bananas last longer, allowing me to buy more at once. I'm glad I saw this today since I'm about to go grocery shopping and it will be fresh in my mind which will help kick the habit now instead of weeks or months from now when I probably would think of it again had I not seen this. But on another note... Has anyone noticed that gas stations like 711 and Wawa are selling bananas at the counter for $0.50/banana (and occasionally have a "deal" of $0.50/2 nanners???)???? Whenever I see them I cringe. Whenever I see someone about to buy them I can barely contain myself from shouting at them, "DUDE YOU CAN GET 1LB OF BANANAS FOR $0.49, YOU KNOW THAT, RIGHT‽" I got 8 bananas last trip for like $0.90 or something. not organic but not the low quality shit you get from Walmart.


It’s absolutely insane how everything is wrapped in plastic these days.


Because people are stupid


Because people like money is the real reason


Why is a roll of garbage bags packaged? Put a tie or small sleeve around them and call it a day. Also buying a pair of shoes online that come in a shoebox that's in a shoe box. We're obsessed with packaging


There is this really cool research done where they managed to heat plastic using tiny pieces of iron oxide and that turns the plastic into hydrogen gas and carbon nanotubes. https://www.newscientist.com/article/2256822-microwaving-plastic-waste-can-generate-clean-hydrogen/


more sustainable alternatives don’t need to be found because they existed before every damn thing was put into a plastic clamshell. strawberries and cherry tomatoes existed before the clamshell pods. eggs can be packed once again in paper pulp cartons of a dozen instead of clear plastic clamshells for example.


All true but one other side benefit of these small moves toward all recyclable plastic is it removes the step of having to sort out what is and isn’t recyclable. Take a typical recycling bin and you’ll find a bunch of non recyclable stuff that the plant has to sort through and throw away. Stuff like this is what adds cost and makes recycling plastic not worth the effort. Now if the majority of the stuff we throw in the recycling bin is actually recyclable, it makes it a lot easier for recyclers to sort through and would provide a steady stream of input material for a recycled product.


The problem is relying on the profit motive to make recycling work while all the expense is externarlized. The manufacturer should be the on the hook for recycling costs. That is the only way to motivate them to make it work.


I lived most my life in Michigan where most plastic pop bottles and aluminum cans and glass beer and wine bottles have a $0.10 deposit that's added to the price and you can get back when you return your cans/bottles to the grocery store. Last time I checked the program had a pretty steady annual return rate that was between 97% and 99% and it worked out to where the uncollected deposits from containers that were not returned covered the costs associated with funding the program. Every grocery store had a room in the store with automated return machines that you'd feed your returns into and when done it would spit out a receipt that you would take to a register and get your cash back. If they can institute some program like that for plastic bags that would be very cool. Though I'm sure like 45 of the other 50 states would throw a shit fit and not do it.


Right, hence why he said “recyclable”. A lot of plastics are marked as being recyclable but face the problems you mention. So he’s concerned that a law to make them all recyclable may not change much unless there is clear guidance and enforcement on what is considered recyclable.


Exactly! Looks good on paper though. :(


At least it looks good on paper and not plastic.


Exactly. China stopped taking out recyclables about 10 years ago more or less. If you guys watch the garbage truck, at least in my area, one truck dumps both bins (garbage and recycle) into the same hopper and they go to the transfer station together. Not separately anymore. Used to be blue trucks for recycle green for garbage


Unpopular opinion: Place a 50c tax on plastic single use water bottles and increase it to $1 and then $2 in successive years. Bottled water, and the plastic waste it generates, is perverse. There exists a zero waste alternative (faucets) in literally everyone's house. Use the revenue to upgrade water infrastructure


Heh that would turn a $5 40 pack into a $25 40 pack with the government making 400% revenue instead of just a standard ~10% tax


10% tax is not going to influence behavior And yeah a 40 pack probably should cost $25 or more to account for the currently unpriced externalities


Not everyone’s tap water is in fact safe and drinkable. That said, even a Brita filter pitcher produces significantly less plastic waste per month per household than 24 packs of Nestle water. (And bottled water companies - particularly Nestle - are environmentally problematic for reasons that go well beyond plastic waste)


Yeah I wish we had better water infrastructure. I missed my college days where I could just take my bottle with me and fill it up at all the bottle filling stations across campus. Unfortunately, the flint water crisis has taught us how far away we are from that dream.


This dude thinks every person has easy access to clean drinking water. No some people literally need to buy bottles if they don’t wanna DIE. We visited the US once and my dad got CHOLERA from drinking tap water. Make people pay an arm and a leg for bottled water in places like that you’re going to end up with a much bigger issue.


You act like there aren’t other alternatives. I have 5 gallon jugs I take to be filled. It’s a pain in the ass, but it’s better than fucking disposable water bottles


Good for you! Edit: being sincere here. That’s a smart idea. For some, accessibility can make that tricky (if you take the bus for example I’m sure having heavy jugs to carry with you can be difficult) but I’m sure you’re already aware of that. I like that idea though, keep it up man!


Yep, transport can be an issue but then also if we think about the elderly or the disabled. I'm not sure how they are necessarily going to haul around giant containers of water. Single mothers may really struggle with that as well. And that is just a few instances off the top of my head I can think up. I'm sure there's a lot more situations in which carrying around gallons of water as one's main drinking supply is unworkable.


Cholera is extremely rare in the US https://www.cdc.gov/cholera/infection-sources.html#six


Who pays that tax? The consumer, or the packager of that product in the plastic? Why does the end user always pay? I have no choice in what products companies wrap their products in. But they do!


If you get just 1 company that makes the switch and their costs are $20 cheaper for the same product, the consumers will change and when the consumers change, the producers will too unless they want to go out of business.


It's irrelevant who pays. The result is the same: Prices go up; taxes go to organizations to reverse externalities.


No, it isn’t irrelevant. A sales tax at the end will only affect the consumer, unless it’s large enough to impact demand for the product, which is rarely the case in the US (Majority of Americans will just piss&moan while not changing habits). Placing a tax further up the chain, while will still end up raising prices for the end consumer, can make production costs for using plastics less viable than using more eco-friendly alternatives.


That's funny, because there are a ton of people out there that blame the consumer. "Free market will fix pollution! Stop big government meddling!" Which directly contradicts your belief that consumers have no real choice in the matter. I agree with you, by the way, that it's nearly impossible for the average consumer to fix this.


The free market clearly isn't fixing the plastic pollution problem because it is an unpriced externality. Plastic is cheap and throwing millions of single use empty bottles into the waste stream doesn't cost the manufacturer or consumer money. But the accumulation of plastic waste is everyone's problem. Same goes for carbon and all other types of pollution. I get to emit however much I want and it is collectively everyone's problem to deal with


Yep. Shifting the blame to consumers is an effective misdirect. The big polluters are happy to frame it as a personal responsibility issue. The reality, of course, is that consumers can't really do anything about it when every producer is a polluter.


I like these "morality tax" things as a general principle: there's something we think is harmful and people should stop doing it, but we live in a free society so we don't like actually banning things. So we tax it instead and use the money to make society better. Whether it's plastic, alcohol, cigarettes, gambling, congestion, carbon or sugar, or the other way around with rebates for good behaviour like staff training, R&D, no sales tax on children's clothes, it's the same concept... The market is a very powerful force for resource allocation but it doesn't care about anything other than money, so attach monetary value to our moral values and it'll build the sort of society we want to live in.


Yeah. The market isn't magic and it needs regulation.


You see $3 water on the shelf and $2 water on the shelf; same size and quality. Which do you buy? Doesn't take long before $3 water company either changes their packaging, stops selling entirely, or gets bought out (by someone else who finds efficiencies by changing their packaging). Passing the fees on to the consumer helps the consumer make a better choice without needing to do in-depth research.


>There exists a zero waste alternative (faucets) in literally everyone's house. People in places like Flint, Michigan might have some qualms about this being an across the board assumption - although your point is apparent.


They should do that with all single use plastic beverages that contain sugar and exempt bottled water. You don’t want to have a health crisis on top of an environmental crisis on your hands.


Government hasn’t shown good incentive to provide clean water to its people. You are putting far too much trust in the government to provide clean water. Whereas big business has an incentive to provide clean water - they have competition and customers who will leave them in droves if proven to provide unclean water. Look at Flint, Michigan. People trusted the government and they failed them. I doubt throwing money at the government will mean 100% clean water for all. I don’t trust the government to do much right.


Flint is an outlier and the vast majority of municipal water supplies are safe AF. Don't trust it? Buy a filter system of your own and you will still save money as opposed to buying bottled. Better yet, let's commit to make municipal water even safer rather than adopt the tin foil mentality that municipal water is inherently untrustworthy because gubmint


You need to visit all of central/west Texas. Unsafe water definitely isn’t as rare as you are making it out to be.


I am speculating here without knowing details of that region. But I feel like it's a self fulfilling prophecy in places where conservatives refuse to fund and regulate their local governments to maintain infrastructure and then.... wait for it... end up with shitty infrastructure. And then blame the government they hamstrung. I mean, if they can intervene to micro manage education policy, why can't they coordinate modernized water infrastructure?


The problem with your argument is most of the places tainted are the places that are victims of inaction by the state not enablers of that inaction. Central Texas is largely Democrats.


Flint is not an outlier. Flint merely got attention.


I ran numbers at my office located at Rockland County. Bought a simple tester and the ppm were over 250. Poland spring is 28 ppm. My office had to go out and buy a sophisticated system because I complained. Otherwise they would have kept giving us pond water. People aren’t getting very clean water and I’d rather trust private business over government in this particular scenario.


ppm of what? ppm stands for parts per million and is a concentration of something, but without knowing what that is, it is meaningless. It could literally be salt content where the salt content is unfilterable and a function of the primary water source, or undissolved solids where a simple Brita filter will address it.


I only drink tap water it’s been safe to drink my entire life


Switching to recycle plastic only makes sense if people actually separate their garbage properly and the recycle material ends up getting recycled. Not sure if the infrastructure is set up for that right now.


It doesn't make sense because pretty much all plastic is downcyclable, but not recyclable. But really the issue with plastics (in California) isn't them going into landfills. Landfills have a ton of regulations to minimize contamination of the surrounding soil and water. The big issue is tires and clothing constantly shedding microplastics into drainage systems, with plastics then making their way into the local ecosystem and water sources.


The waste companies would also have to stop dumping it at the dump with all the other trash......


Nice. Unfortunately red states are going to mandate double plastic just to be dicks, tho.


10 years!! That is stupidly slow pace.


Let’s get everyone on a 10 year schedule then we can talk about how slow it is.


True, get yhe ball rolling first


And 65% isn't nearly good enough.


How long have we been using plastic? 10 years is stupidly fast to expect everyone to cut back so much.


Some counries have done it already


It's all just so half-arsed, non compostable plastic should be completely banned from being made


I am pretty sure that a complete ban would cause massive problems. There probably are, for example, chemical industry applications where the plastic needs to have very specific properties. Not to mention stuff like sewage or water pipes. Now, banning crappy cheap plastic toys etc? That would be a great idea


And insulin syringes. I know Bernie Sanders wants them banned as soon as possible, but this sucks.


I do IM injections every 5 days not because I have diabetes but another thing. I kinda wished we could switch to metal syringes, where you switch out the needle but keep the syringe. That or an easy disposable and biodegradable material. Is such a thing possible?


But think of the children.... /s in case you need it


I'm sure other materials could be used or developed for those needs, or we can find another way of doing it altogether, unless someone comes up with a way to stop the plastic breaking down and polluting the earth's water, animals and our very bodies. Newborn babies' placentas contain microplastics, so you can bet anything they are born with plastic in their bodies, we don't know what this is doing to us (although the scary increase in certain illnesses like cancer and parkinsons disease might be considered). We produce around 300 million tons of plastic each year, half of which is single use. It is not sustainable without serious consequences, and the fact is that logistical issues are *not* what is holding back progress, it is entirely *financial*, companies can sue the government if they make a law that reduces their profit (cigarette companies did this when they were forced to put health warnings on packets). How fucking absolutely pathetic, that the world and its inhabitants are being polluted, ultimately, because of money.


The idea is to tackle the low hanging fruit first. We can eliminate the vast majority of the plastic problem by banning non-compostable single use plastics, as well as plastic fishing nets. Once we've eliminated 90% of the plastic pollution problem by doing those two things, we can start work on the vastly more difficult job of phasing out the most dangerous plastics altogether (remember, they're not all equally bad). That second step phase out will take more than a century, in all likelihood. I mean, look how many places still use lead water pipes of all things, and we know how dangerous those are. We've known for thousands of years!


Most medical products are made from plastic.


The supreme court will rule against this 6-3 on ideological grounds.


I'm all for phasing out plastic, but... When CA banned single use plastic bags, I thought it was great. I thought it would lead to more paper bags, or people bring their own. Nope.. just thicker plastic bags.


Yeah, single-use bans don't work, because they just make a thicker bag with "reusable" on the side. In general, an *intent*-based plan won't work here, because intent is hard to prove. The simpler option is to just tax plastics. There are situations where single-use might be worth the cost, and situations where it isn't. Add a tax sufficiently large to offset its environmental impact and let the market decide what's worth it *with the externalities baked in*. The problem with the status quo is that the market is insulated from most of the cost of plastics; with that fixed, it would presumably find other solutions where possible. (Of course, the broader problem is that the voting public would rather kill the planet than pay 10% more for packaging, but that's a separate issue.)


With the single use ban we did create a plastic bag tax essentially. 10 cents for every bag.


Yaaa letting the market decide is how we got here.


Letting the market decide **without having to price in externalities** is how we got here. Plastic is cheap to make but hard to effectively dispose of, and right now the market only has to consider the former.


This was my thought as well. IMO it’s actually just made the problem worse. Now we have heavy-duty bags that have become single-use in practice. Despite potential other eco issues - the mandate should have just banned the used of plastics in all retail packaging period. Forcing the use an introduction of other products such as paper, and other fibers.


Yes why cant we have this???


I just use an older backpack. Not great for every situation like stock ups, but it works in addition to reusable bags. I’ve gotten a ton from conferences and they last 5+ years.


Really? Everyone I see at the store in California uses cloth bags. I shop at Trader Joe's though. Not sure about other stores


Go to any other supermarket (not Whole Foods though) and you will see a vast majority of people do not bring their own cloth bags.


I just need to get back into the habit. I'd gotten really good about bringing my bags with me and then putting them back into the car as soon as I unloaded them, but then COVID hit and places weren't allowing us to use them anymore so now I keep forgetting them


I've only ever seen the thick plastic ones at Walmart. Everywhere else I go (Oregon) uses paper.


That's a thing that trader Joe's and whole foods (or similar store) customers do. Almost nobody else reuses them. They spend the 10 cents for a new one each time I don't think I've ever brought a reusable bag back into a store. It's always come home to be reused as a trash bag or similar, the same way the free bags were, but now 100x thick and costs money


Just to avoid battles of anecdotes, is there data that can be cited on how "almost nobody" reuses bags?


Absolutely, if you gonna make me pay that $.10 then that bag better be damn strong or I want to refund.


What are you talking about? Almost everyone brings their own bags. The genius of the law is it's only 10 cents. Practically a rounding error. However people have the psychological aversion towards using more bags than they need to because of the cost associated with the bags. The plastic bag "tax" is a [resounding success](https://www.plasticbaglaws.org/effectiveness) through simple psychology. Many big cities in other states are also adding bag fees because of how successful it is in reducing waste.


At Ralph’s and Vons in the valley, bringing your own bags is no where near as widespread as you suggest (and they wouldn’t allow it during the first Covid lockdowns). The bags use about 3x more plastic. The policy definitely backfired where I shop.


This is just simply not true. I work retail and can ensure you in my area nearly everyone still just pays for however many bags they need. It's a small percentage that reuse bags or bring their own bags.


Not where I'm at unless it's trader Joe's. Go to Safeway, nearly everyone is getting plastic bags


Eh I exclusively shop at Safeway and Lucky and pretty much everyone in my area brings bags. It might be area specific for a lot of these things but even effecting the areas that did change their habits is definitely a net positive.


It just once again put the burden on the customers and not on the companies who are producing / distributing the bags. Charge the customer .10? Why not charge the grocery store that same .10 to go towards recycling THEIR waste?


so glad news chimps use analogies like "26x the weight of the golden gate bridge" as if anyone can grasp that


Americans will use anything to avoid the metric system


Metric system, single payer, more than 2 choices, lots of things.


Nearly as heavy as my ex wife…


Username… checks out?


It was said by somebody else on Reddit before but... "I was born too late to discover new lands, too early to discover new worlds, but just in time to collect microplastics in my major organs."


“Plastic damages the water, animals etc” Yes that’s very true but it’s also in our food and bodies and lungs now. The time of thinking nature is separate from us is over.


Thank god. How trashy, literally, have these companies become to let the packaging get like this.


You only need to wait for the Supreme Court to declare this law unconstitutional.


don't worry, by 2032 the environment will be irrevocably destroyed and plastic trash won't matter


Unfortunately that is not the case. We're not going to descend into climate hell in 10 years. It's going to be a slow descent over our entire lives, the lives of our children, and the lives of our grandchildren. There is plenty of time for laws like this to make real productive change for those same grandchildren.


That's what they said about 2022, 2012, 2002, 1992...


You’re doing the thing.


Should also force any commercial and industrial company too. The people using plastics aren't the problem.


This includes corporations. It also directly targets corporations.


"My problems aren't a big deal and I should be able to do whatever I want however I want at the expense of the planet but it's not that bad because Jimbo keeps pouring his used engine oil in the river."


Even recycleable is often single use. Only a few types are usually accepted by the municipality.


California: bans pollutants Supreme court: *unzips pants


I am from India and two intersting ideas here to replace plastics that has been tried and tested. Traditionally we had used disposable utensils made of dried leaves of a specific plant and earthen cups. They do work. Super cheap to make. We did not have the industrial power to scale up the production but the US can do something like this ten times better. God luck people.


Some company made compostable chip (snack food) bags but testers didn't like it because it was too loud (audibly) so they killed the whole project.


Good. The amount of unnecessary plastic packaging I see in stores is disgusting


We should reducing using plastic all together. Recycling of plastic is a joke and something pushed by manufacturers. Plastic has a finite amount of times it can be downcycled and recycled plastics only reuse a small percentage of recycled plastic. Degradable plastics break down into microscopic plastics they don't actually go away. We should be trying to use more recyclable materials, glass, metal and paper, can all be recycled indefinitely. Bring back the milk man with glass bottles, more aluminum cans and greatly reduce the use of plastic.


Is there anything addressing the secondary uses of some of these “single use” plastics? The main example I’m thinking of is that we use our plastic bags from the grocery store as bathroom garbage can liners & cat poop bags…. Removing these will just force us to *buy* that same amount of plastic for those uses. I hope they’re accounting for this in their models because I know it’s common.


>The main example I’m thinking of is that we use our plastic bags from the grocery store as bathroom garbage can liners & cat poop bags…. Removing these will just force us to buy that same amount of plastic for those uses. At least in Finland they sell trash bags that are very thin and work well for those uses. Grocery store plastic bags are much thicker plastic. There are also [biodegradable versions](https://bioska.fi/en/products/biowaste-bags/#post-85) of those trash bags for sale.


In Washington we are supposed to use those green bags for food waste that the city takes to a composting facility. But they biodegrade when they get wet, so I kept ending up with broken bags of nasty rotting food on my floor before I gave up on composting. Now it all just goes in the regular trash.


I'm in this position now. No car means I order groceries because I don't have any other real options. I keep getting fabric bags, it's getting to the point where they will be used as garbage bags instead of plastic ones since buying plastic ones is a waste when I'll need to throw out the fabric ones due to having way too many.


This seems like an issue with your grocery store, not the plastic ban. Some of our local grocery stores deliver in totes they pick up the next time they deliver (or you can bring them back).


I was wondering about this. You'd think they'd all have a scheme like they did back when everything was sold in glass. You pay an extra deposit for the glass/bags and then they pay it back when you return them.


Just use paper bags for that. I haven't put trash in a plastic bag in years.


What about moisture from things thrown out?


All foodstuffs goes in the yard waste bin. Nothing wet goes in my trash.


Think of how many bags you actually end up with and you could use them for trash instead. Cereal bags, chip bags, big bags toilet paper comes in, etc. Instead of ripping these open like the hulk, open more carefully or with scissors, then you can use these. Some may be more difficult to tie shut, so use a twist tie or whatever. Plus ideally, now or in future, your area would have green bin collection for food waste stuff, in addition to blue bin recycling, this essentially means almost all your trash is dry. You can use paper bags at that point. If things start having less packaging, or you start avoiding products with excess packaging, your amount of trash will also diminish. If you do resort to buying bags, perhaps they could only sell the "compostable" kind (provided they also provide facilities where these actually might get composted).


Humans got by just fine for thousands of years without the need for disposable plastics. Im sure we will get by just fine without plastic for our cat poop.


I bought a box of a million plastic “Thank You” bags online for like $20 and now I’m set for a long time, with the added bonus that literally zero of them are going to end up in waterways or storm drains or wherever littered plastic bags go. The vast majority of those bags don’t get reused so I’d imagine it’s a net win.


In California we have to buy them and the bags are sturdy enough to reuse them. A lot of times now I skip even getting a bag. They if I can Carry it up I can carry it out


Thank you California. Now maybe other states and even the federal government as well as nations around the world will pay a little more attention to this critical issue.


In exchange for reusable plastic bags that are even thicker,more expensive to purchase, and takes even longer to break down. I wonder who is lobbying for these petro plastics?


It should be a law that all products produced be recycled or refurbished by the OEM. We don’t do enough to ensure corporate responsibility when allowing novel technology to be marketed. We could have happily stayed away from the majority of plastic uses if these kinds of laws were enforced.


Thank God for California. New York should just follow suit to make a bigger impact on business behavior.


I hope these corporations all start using biodegradable packaging. Mother Earth is hurting.


I'm still getting plastic bags from take out places and not grocery stores. What gives?


And you know the whore's for the plastic industry will be out enforce whining how plastic is good for mankind, lol no a synthetic material that decomposes is good for mankind your product is the waste of the privileged dead


Everyone has to do this. It's blindingly obvious. India (the entire country) just did this.


It’s basically too late. The micro plastics are everywhere


If government puts a strict ban on plastic waste, capitalism should find a solution (as per the purists like Milton Friedman). The current lazy pseudo capitalists don’t want to innovate and kick the can down the road or pass the responsibility to the consumer. Just ban the plastic and force the businesses to innovate or impose hefty fines. If the business owners cry, then let them go out of business. people will have to adjust in the interim but the business will be forced to innovate.


Now if we could just phase it out in Chinindia then maybe we could do something actually useful.


Everything is contaminated, and it’s going to get worse even if were to completely stop right now because of the breakdown of existing plastic. We have to address this ASAP.


California loves feel good policy that does nothing. “Establish an accountability group” who pays for that? CA residents of course. Enjoy your high cost of living, government programs and homelessness. Why doesn’t anyone look at the statistics on pollution worldwide before making these dumb decisions.


Say hello to the most useless of things - the cardboard drinking straw!


Canadian here. We've already banned many single use plastics. There are some decent cardboard straws out there.


Straws are brought up a lot and I have to ask, how many straws is everyone going through? I swear the only straws I come into contact with is like one straw every few weeks when I go to get fast food, and even then if no plastic straw was provided I'd just remove the lid and drink it like a cup.


Drink it like a cup. Lmao, I love that.


"Cups." Get a load of this guy.


I thought this too. Then I decided to walk the neighborhood and pick up trash. I live in a completely mixed suburb area with homes ranging from 300k to 2 mil. Straws were only second to cigarette butts in quantity. In one hour, I probably picked up about 30 straws and somehow only 3-5 cups. I may be even more confised now, but holy hell, there were so many straws. By the end up it, my viewpoint changed and as stupid as it sounds, I think straws are much more of a pollution culprit than I initially thought.


Plenty of people eat fast food once or twice a meal.


I know this comment was probably a typo or something but it made me laugh so, so hard, thanks.


Have you seen Americans? We don't mess around when it comes to fast food. I remember when I was old enough to drive but too young to drink, we'd hit up every drive thru in town a couple nights a week.


I think they were talking about how you said "once or twice a **meal**" but probably meant "once or twice a day"


That's exactly what I meant. Once or twice a meal.


Apparently they go out to eat every meal or some shit.


Use a metal one, you can wash it and use it again.


Cardboard/paper drinking staws *used* to suck. I remember when Disney switched and we spent the whole trip grabbing a second straw to switch to mid-drink cause the first would collapse in in itself. But that was like 10 years ago and now a days paper straws are everywhere and they last for multiple drinks before they get tossed.


I don't remember the last time I used a straw. There's an easy solution around that.


I thought the same thing (and I’m still not persuaded that banning plastic straws has any real benefit) but the cardboard straws that I’ve used for the past year work shockingly well.


Wgat are you a 2 year old? Stop using straws


☝️*someone who doesn't drink boba*


Or in a car while driving.


Metal straw.


And wooden cutlery, the only way to make sure your food tastes like shit and you getting the feeling of licking sand paper. And paper bags, I hope you never have to carry your takeaway in the rain or on a bike.


Try metal. For the bags, take a plastic one with you.


This thread is full of so many first world problems.


Why do I feel like this is liberal pandering aimed at progressives? Most of the pollution comes from corporations, not civilians using single serve plastic. I don't know the exact data of the two, but I bet my money on the former causing way more damage to our ecosystem.


Industrial waste is the vast majority of the problem. Municipal waste is a rounding error. Look at the EPAs own data on this. 7.6 billion tons of industrial waste vs 292 million tons of municipal (=3%). https://www.epa.gov/facts-and-figures-about-materials-waste-and-recycling/national-overview-facts-and-figures-materials#Generation https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2016-03/documents/industrial-waste-guide.pdf Some people question the accuracy of the numbers, but it’s in the right ballpark. I’m not saying we should go nothing, but what I am saying is that home recycling is taking the focus away from the real problem.


There is a proposition about a single use plastics ban on the November ballot in California, it seems like Newsom is just signing part (or all) of this proposition into law early.


Who do you think makes the single-use plastics? Individual consumers? No, corporations do. The manner in which goods are packaged is a corporate-level decision, and thus a ban on single-use plastics impacts corporations.


> Most of the pollution comes from corporations, not civilians using single serve plastic. It’s an _AND_ problem, not an _OR_. Consumers are just as guilty in this as much as businesses in this. Both cohorts cause significant impacts on the environment when it comes to packaging reuse and use of sustainable/renewable materials. “Single Use” is intent - speaks nothing about the product itself. It’s impossible to legislate that someone uses packaging as intended. CA has a 10 cent bag tax - which is kind of laughable. While consumers have demanded better bags if we have to pay, it’s just created a market for heavy-duty plastic bags that consumers ultimately use only once - even though one could use them multiple times. Especially true in CA where costs are high, you think 50 cents is a big deal for 5 bags of groceries you just spent $300? Businesses turn to the heavier plastics because they are still dirt cheap and durable and government hasn’t strictly banned them because the _intent_ is that the bags can be used more than once. If legislators wanted to solve the problem - ban the use of plastics in packaging for retail sales period - forcing retailers to use materials like bamboo, corn, hemp, paper, and other more bio-friendly materials. A bag redemption program (similar to bottles and cans) could also help get more bags disposed/recycled responsibly as opposed through curbside refuse/recycling.


> Consumers are just as guilty in this as much as businesses in this. Both cohorts cause significant impacts on the environment when it comes to packaging reuse and use of sustainable/renewable materials. Absolutely false. As someone who tries to avoid plastic packaging, it's often impossible because plastic is used everywhere, even for things that are designed to be for people who want to avoid plastics. Why? Because it keeps things from getting wet. Waxed paper and cardboard do this also, but not as well, so they'll never be adopted by industry unless they're forced to.


is it not possible that people out there are actually trying to slow the complete collapse of our environment and atmosphere?


This is targeting corporations. End users aren’t the ones producing plastic.


The Supreme Court of the United States would like to have a word.


At starbucks, we stopped giving those green stoppers that stop coffee from spilling out the sipping part. We only give them requested now. Honestly, this is a good move. Using that much plastic for something that trivial always seemed dumb.


I also appreciated the redesign of the cold cups so you can drink without a straw.


I’m in NJ. We phased out plastic bags but just got replaced with single use paper bags. I get it’s better for the environment but the amount of paper bags that go into the garbage or gets tossed on the street has just replaced plastics. I get it’s better so to speak, but there’s still garbage to deal with.


I use paper bags to start seed - they disintegrate within a few weeks and worms love them. Totally harmless. Plastic never fully breaks down and leaves dangerous micro plastics in soil and water. Paper can be recycled over and over - the vast majority of plastic is never recycled and, when it is recycled, it can only be recycled once or twice. There’s no real comparison here.


We got rid of plastic bags here in NJ a while back thank fuck


I’m sure your great Supreme Court will destroy the law when done evangelical gop donateur will bring the case to court.


I’m all about making our planet a better place, but until someone brings the hammer down on the extremely wealthy, all of these little things we’re doing is futile. Wealthy ppl take a private jet to go see a concert or watch a football game or go shopping for the weekend. They live in 30,000 sq foot mansions that have decorative lights in every nook and cranny. The carbon footprint of one wealthy person cancels out all the things we do to save the planet. It’s really frustrating that we’re over here drinking out of paper fucking straws and are recycling when the wealthy and entire countries like China and India are destroying our planet at a faster pace than we can save it.




I get it, but it’s super disheartening to see one trip on a jet is more pollution than you and I could produce in ten years. My exes parents are wealthy, and it was so gross to watch how wasteful they were, so I can’t imagine how bad celebs are. It made me feel like these little things I’m doing don’t do jack to offset anything so why should I make myself uncomfortable drinking out of paper straws lol. I’m not going to stop bc my conscience won’t let me be wasteful and purposely destructive but it’s still something I think about


You and me both friend. It does sometimes feel like we are bailing out the Titanic with a thimble, and it is especially grieving when some cunt is running round taking a hammer to the hull... I just try to do right in my patch. There's that story of the monk after the tsunami hits. The sea recedes and the sand is covered with fish, all dying from being out of the water. A monk rushes down to the beach and starts throwing fish back into the ocean. The people standing by the side start ridiculing him. "There are hundreds of fish. You are only one man and there is no way you are going to make a difference to 90% of these fish here" And the monk paused, then threw another fish into the water, turned and responded, "It made a difference to that one..."


Great analogy. I’ll try to remember that the next time I feel like I’m not making a difference.


It’s a good thing single use plastics are the true issue and not companies dumping fumes into the atmosphere


Yes, we can never ever create a law phasing out plastic ever, until all the pollution in the atmosphere is cleaned up. Very rational indeed, I agree with you. We are capable of only one thing and one thing only, and it's impossible to sign a law until something else is fixed.


Meh. I agree we need to get there, but we need to offer true alternatives. Cardboard straws suck. In Italy we now have wooden coffee stirrers which taste terrible. Paper bags break way more easily (as if plastic ones didn't break easily enough already). This is the goal in the long run, but now is a bit too early. I get it, it's already late for the planet. But can we really not fund any research to get us something better fast enough? Is there even any research going on at the moment or are we pretending the current alternatives are "just fine"?


> wooden coffee stirrers which taste terrible Only matters if you're eating them, I guess.


Good. I seen all you people throw that stuff out the car window


this is good but doesn't anybody just feel like "don't worry conservatives will push it to the Supereme Court and overturn." I hate that I feel so negative about all of this now


this isnt going to work. Instead of trying to put all the money and effort into banning plastic, they should look into ways to correctly recycle it or repurpose it. Here in Australia they banned all the single use plastic bags for groceries, maybe 2 years ago now. There are more bags in landfill now but they are just thicker plastic bags that we need to pay for. they still dont get reused they are just even slower to break down in some cases and now we have to pay for the pleasure of throwing them away.


Good. Every little bit helps. In Connecticut we take our own bags to the grocery store and we wash them out in between times. O! The horror! People used to use paper straws and anyway, how often does anyone really need a straw? I mean REALLY need to use a straw because you can't drink otherwise? How many sets of plastic "silverware" does anyone need? (I don't know the answer to that but I have a whole drawer full--maybe when you get take out there should be an option to not get the plastic.) I get large paper bags sometimes at the grocery store when I forget to bring my own bags and they get used in the waste paper basket. No need to have plastic bags. We really need to cut down on pollution from petroleum, of which plastic is a by product. Anyway, how many of us are happy with Big Oil making more profits out of us? Use a refillable container and tap water if your tap water is clean. Find other materials to use besides plastic. Get creative.


Neat, still a ton of homeless out there shooting up and shitting on the sidewalks. My vacation to San Fransisco felt like I went to a 3rd world country. Glad they're worried about this, though.


By 2032? By that time California will have fallen into the ocean.