City of Los Angeles Considers Outright Ban on Plastic Straws

The city of Los Angeles will consider on Tuesday a proposal to enact an outright ban on plastic straws in local restaurants by 2021.  

California's state law to restrict plastic straws goes into effect Jan.1 and limits restaurants to giving out single use straws only upon the customer's request. Fast-food restaurants are exempt from the new ruling. 

However, the LA proposal to ban the plastic straws entirely could impact fast-food chains and directs the city to "mitigate any impacts an outright straw ban might have on the local disabled community."

Other cities like Malibu and San Francisco have already passed outright bans against the use of plastic straws.

According to the National Park Service, Americans use an estimated 500 million drinking straws every day, or enough to fill up 125 school buses. 

Yet even if all those straws suddenly washed into the sea, they'd only account for about .03 percent of the 8 million metric tons of different types of plastics estimated to enter the oceans in a given year, according to Bloomberg News. An estimated 46 percent of the debris actually polluting the ocean is abandoned fishing equipment. But go ahead and drink out of your soggy paper straws.

Photo: Getty Images

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