Hawaii weighs first-in-nation plastic bans at restaurants

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BERLIN, GERMANY – MAY 29: A discarded plastic straw lies on a beach along the Spree River in the city center on May 29, 2018 in Berlin, Germany. Europe is struggling to combat plastics pollution in its waterways and seas. Yesterday it announced it will seek to ban the use of certain common plastic items, […]

HONOLULU (AP) – Hawaii would be the first state in the U.S. to ban most plastics used at restaurants under legislation that aims to cut down on waste that pollutes the ocean.

Dozens of cities across the country have banned plastic foam containers, but Hawaii would be the first to bar them statewide.

A second, more ambitious proposal would go even further and prohibit restaurants from distributing and using plastic drink bottles, utensils, stirring sticks, bags and straws.

Activists believe the first measure has a better chance of passing.

Some businesses say the legislation would force them to raise prices because there aren’t good alternatives to plastic.

Hawaii is a liberal state with a record of environmental policies such as mandating renewable energy use and prohibiting sunscreen ingredients that harm coral.
 

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