These businesses and regions have had the final straw with single-use plastic drinking straws – and they are taking big steps to phase them out of regular use worldwide.
Thanks to a bill proposed by Assembleyman Ian Calderon, sit-down restaurants in California may be required to ask customers if they want straws before providing them. While the legislation would not affect fast food restaurants or cafés, he says that it is a simple step in the right direction towards changing business and consumer attitudes about plastic straws.
“How long have people know[n] that plastic is harmful to the environment? Still we all use it. This is a measured approach that helps change behavior,” Calderon wrote on Twitter.
While California could be the first U.S. state to pass legislation addressing straws, Seattle has already approved a bill that will ban restaurants and cafés from giving out plastic straws to customers come July 2018 – however, businesses will still be allowed to provide recyclable or biodegradable options.
Meanwhile, multinational coffee stop chain Costa Coffee has recently announced that they will ditching plastic straws this year in favor of a more environmentally friendly alternative.
Similarly, Asian food chain Wagamama will be replacing their plastic straws with biodegradable options on Earth Day. The UK-based café Pret A Manger said that they have made paper straws freely available in some of their restaurants along with plastic straws available at the customer’s request behind the counter.
The goals co-align with the 25-year action plan unveiled by UK Prime Minister Theresa May to “eradicate all avoidable plastic waste” by 2042. The rest of the European Union plans on mandating that all single-use plastic packaging must be recyclable by 2030.
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