First Bags, Then Straws, Now State Legislators Want a Statewide Plastic Ban

A bill currently making its way through the legislature aims at reducing the amount of single-use waste generate in the state by requiring packaging and products to be truly recyclable or compostable.

 “The future of California’s quality of life is at stake,” said Senator Ben Allen, D-Santa Monica, one of the authors of the bill. “Rather than continue to tinker around the edges with one-off bans of individual plastic items, we need a thoughtful, comprehensive solution to address this serious problem head on.”

Senate Bill 54, not to be confused with last year’s Sanctuary State bill, would establish the California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act, requiring adoption of regulations to source reduce and recycle 75 percent of single-use packaging and products sold or distributed in California by 2030. It would also require that all single-use packaging and products sold or distributed in California are recyclable or compostable on and after 2030.

“We have the technology and innovation to improve how we reduce and recycle the plastic packaging and products in our state,” said Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, D-San Diego, principal coauthor of the bill. “Now, we have to find the political will to do so.”

California voters have already approved a statewide ban on single-use plastic bags, and Governor Brown last year signed a statewide plastic straw ban.