Polystyrene ban

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, April 29, 2011 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Senator Alan Lowenthal (D-Long Beach) is the author of SB 568 which would prohibit a food vendor from dispensing prepared food to a customer in a polystyrene foam food container as of January 1, 2014.

This proposal does not take into account the efforts of manufacturer to expand local collection of this product for recycling. The ban would result in the loss of 4,800 jobs in the State, totaling $222 million dollars in earnings. The increased cost to restaurants would be astronomical.  It also ignores the reduced effectiveness of alternatives to keep prepared foods hot (or cold) and fresh.

Many communities are now accepting polystyrene foam containers in curbside and/or drop off recycling programs.   Both the City of Los Angeles and the City of Long Beach accept clean polystyrene foam containers (a little residual food contamination is okay) but potential replacements satisfactory under SB 568 would not be recyclable.

SB 568 moved out of the Senate Environmental Quality committee on a party-line vote and is currently on third reading on the Senate Floor. CMTA’s Environmental Quality committee opposes this bill.  We believe this is a matter of litter and should be addressed as such.  The target should be behavior, not a product. A ban will result in the substitution of another material being littered.

Read more Environmental Impacts articles

Capitol updates archive 989898989