Many US Cities Say: Plastic Foam Containers Must Go

Plastic foam products, like the trademarked product Styrofoam, have been banned in different cities around the nation. Chicago is one more city that is contemplating making all restaurants and retailers get rid of polystyrene foam products, such as the take-out containers used by many restaurants.

The issue is a serious one, because the petroleum-based plastic doesn’t break down in landfills and emits toxins when it goes through the manufacturing process. A 1986 EPA report on solid waste named the polystyrene manufacturing process as the fifth largest creator of hazardous waste, according to the Earth Resource Foundation’s website.

More cities are now exploring ways to limit the production and use of plastic foam in various businesses around town. Chicago has proposed fines of up to $300 for first offenders. Edmonds, Washington proposed either having business owners sign up for a recycling service or making a composting container available to customers.

Cities need to explore more eco friendly options besides plastic foam that restaurants and retails can use for their needs.

Plastic is not the answer. Whether we use it to bag our groceries or to hold our coffee, plastic has long been known to clog landfills and pollute our environment. It’s time for cities across the nation to work toward developing alternatives to plastic that won’t damage the earth and its future.

More and more cities are waking up to the fact that plastic is an option that hurts the environment more than its convenience is worth. Some have banned plastic bags and now others are banning plastic foam. We just need to make sure that viable alternatives exist, such as reusable bags and other packaging so that these new ordinances do not negatively impact businesses and the economy.

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Tags: ban, Eco-Friendly, plastic, Plastic foam, polystyrene foam, Reusable Bags, Styrofoam, take-out containers

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