The Problem With Plastics

What do water bottles, takeout food containers, Ziploc bags, disposable silverware and milk jugs all have in common?  PLASTIC.  For years now in the United States we have been urged to cut back on our use of plastics.  Recycling bins and water refilling stations are popping up everywhere.  Environmental scientists now estimate that eight million metric tons of plastic finds its way to the oceans annually; only a fraction of the 288 million tons produced.
The plastics, once they reach the ocean, are difficult if not impossible to clean up.  Some of the plastics break down into tiny pieces that are ingested by sea life.  Others tangle and ensnare marine mammals and sea birds leading to a certain death.  The ocean currents gather the plastic trash that finds its way into the water in huge garbage patches in the middle of the ocean.  One of these garbage patches is estimated to be the size of Texas.  
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Moving Away from Plastic Bags

This type of legislation is enacted in an effort to reduce waste and can take many forms.
Effective January 1, 2018, businesses in Suffolk County are required to charge 5¢ for any single-use bag.

California has gone even further, they ban plastic single-use bags and put a fee on the other bags.

New Jersey is considering a statewide ban on plastic bags

VOBEC will be distributing reusable bags at Environmental Awareness Day, be sure to stop by and pick one up!


Plastic Straws Up Next

In addition to charging for plastic bags, many cities are contemplating banning plastic straws.  Interestingly this change is being driven by consumers and environmentally conscious businesses. Seattle has recently banned plastic straws and the sense is there are more citywide bans to come. Consider the alternatives in the picture.
Many of the bars and restaurants in Ocean Beach are joining in the effort.  Support the movement and say NO to the straw.

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Cities Ban Single Use Polystyrene

More and more Cities are banning the use of single use Polystyrene containers.  117 cities in California have already banned this non-biodegradable product and San Diego may be the next.  On April 20, 2018 Baltimore, Maryland banned the use of polystyrene foam and on June 8, 2018 the New York Supreme Court cleared the way for New York City to officially move forward with banning polystyrene foam containers,


The Village of Ocean Beach Environmental Commission (VOBEC) is a Mayoral-appointed advisory group dedicated to the preservation and improvement of the quality of the natural and man-made environment within the Village of Ocean Beach.


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Village of Ocean Beach Environmental Committee · PO Box 457 · Ocean Beach, NY 11770-0457 · USA

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