Los Angeles restaurants will face new restrictions on handing out plastic straws under an ordinance approved Friday.
The City Council voted 12 to 0 for the new rules, which will go into effect for bigger businesses on Earth Day (April 22) and in October for all other restaurants, grocery stores and other food vendors. Councilman Mitch O’Farrell heralded the decision as an important step toward confronting a “major environmental calamity that is unfolding before us.”
“If we don’t act now, plastic in the ocean will outnumber fish” by 2050, he said.
Under the new ordinance, L.A. restaurants cannot offer or provide disposable plastic straws to customers who are dining in or taking food to go unless customers request them. The rules are slightly looser for drive-through or delivery: Businesses can go ahead and ask those customers if they want plastic straws, but are barred from giving them out without a request.
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