New York City Bans Plastic Stirrers, Makes Plastic Straws Available by Request Only
Oceana Applauds New York City Council for Reducing the Amount of Plastic Flooding our Planet
Press Release Date: May 12, 2021
Location: New York
Today, New York City lawmakers passed a bill banning single-use plastic stirrers and requiring restaurants to only provide single-use plastic straws upon request by customers. Customers will not be required to provide a reason for requesting a straw. The bill now heads to Mayor Bill de Blasio’s desk for signing.
“Passing this bill is an important step in reducing New York City’s use of unnecessary single-use plastic that too often ends up in our environment. By banning plastic stirrers and greatly reducing plastic straws, Councilmember Helen Rosenthal and the New York City Council are helping to curb the massive amount of plastic that ends up in our oceans every day,” said Oceana’s New York field representative, Brian Langloss. “The plastic pollution crisis will only worsen as plastic production rates continue to rise. We need more of these policies to stop the problem at the source and encourage a shift to sustainable alternatives.”
Scientists estimate that 33 billion pounds of plastic wash into the ocean every year. That equates to about two garbage trucks’ worth of plastic entering the ocean every minute. Just this past November, Oceana found evidence of nearly 1,800 marine mammals and sea turtles swallowing or become entangled in plastic in U.S. waters between 2009 and early 2020 — 88% of those animals were from species listed as endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act.
Plastic has been found in every corner of the world and has turned up in drinking water, beer, salt, honey and more. Recycling alone will not solve this problem — only 9% of the plastic waste ever created has been recycled, and companies continue to push new plastic products onto the market. With plastic production growing at a rapid rate, increasing amounts of plastic can be expected to flood our blue planet with devastating consequences.
For more information about Oceana’s campaign to end the plastics problem, please visit usa.oceana.org/plastics.
Oceana is the largest international advocacy organization dedicated solely to ocean conservation. Oceana is rebuilding abundant and biodiverse oceans by winning science-based policies in countries that control one-third of the world’s wild fish catch. With more than 225 victories that stop overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution, and the killing of threatened species like turtles and sharks, Oceana’s campaigns are delivering results. A restored ocean means that 1 billion people can enjoy a healthy seafood meal, every day, forever. Together, we can save the oceans and help feed the world. Visit www.USA.Oceana.org to learn more.