California Environmentalists, Lawmakers Target Drinking Straws, Other Plastic

It took years of activist campaigns to turn the plastic bag into a villain, and hard-fought legislation to reduce its presence in oceans and waterways. Now, environmentalists and lawmakers are deploying similar tactics against a new generation of plastic pollutants.

In a file photo, a shorebird is seen walking amid trash that washed ashore after a storm. (Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

In a file photo, a shorebird is seen walking amid trash that washed ashore after a storm. (Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

There are drinking straws, which as a viral video shows can get stuck in a sea turtle’s nose. The hundreds of thousands of bottle caps that wind up on beaches. And the microfibers that wash off polyester clothes, making their way into the ocean, the stomachs of marine life and ultimately our seafood.

Each is the subject of statewide legislation under debate in Sacramento, as California again considers new environmental law that’s at once pioneering and controversial.

Their action comes as plastic takes center stage as the environmental concern du jour.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.