The city of Los Angeles is going green. On Tuesday, the City Council voted in favor of a several ordinances to reduce the city’s carbon footprint, including resolutions to stop using Styrofoam, plastic bags and other single-use plastics at city facilities.
One resolution was passed unanimously with all present voting to prohibit the distribution and sale of Expanded Polystyrene products, aka Styrofoam, within the city.
Councilmember Paul Koretz, who authored the original legislation, said the move was necessary because of the impact Styrofoam has on the environment.
“EPS foam, also known as Styrofoam, is toxic from production to usage to landfill. The Styrene and Benzene in EPS are both known carcinogens and can also negatively affect workers inside EPS factories,” Koretz said in a news release. “The manufacturing process can contaminate neighborhoods outside EPS factories. The toxins can leach into hot drinks and food as people use cups and food containers.”
The City Council passed another ordinance which expands the city’s ban on single-use plastic bags, restricting it to just restaurants and retail stores, and encouraging the use of reusable bags throughout the city.
Additionally, the city plans to ban single-use plastic foodware and other single use plastics at all city-run facilities, including the Los Angeles Zoo.
The city began phasing out its use of plastic items, including Styrofoam, plastic utensils and straws, earlier this year.
The resolution also includes language that requires those facilities to donate or compost any surplus food.
The aim, according to members of the City Council, is for Los Angeles to be a zero-waste municipality.