Alaska Airlines is the latest big company to ditch plastic straws. Here’s why we all should, too. Just the FAQs
A new law bars California restaurants from automatically giving out single-use plastic straws with drinks, starting next year.
The bill, which only applies to full-service restaurants, was signed by California Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday. Customers who want a plastic straw still will be able to request them from the restaurant under the law.
“Plastic has helped advance innovation in our society, but our infatuation with single-use convenience has led to disastrous consequences,” Brown wrote in a signing message, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“It is a very small step to make a customer who wants a plastic straw ask for it,” Brown said, the Times reports.
With the passage of the bill, California becomes the first state to bar restaurants from automatically giving out plastic straws. The law, however, is less restrictive than some passed by cities such as Seattle.
Restaurants not in compliance with the law will receive two warnings; they can be fined up to $300 per year. The restaurant industry did not oppose the proposal.
It is estimated that Americans use 500 million straws per day and straws are among the top 10 marine debris collected during the International Coastal Cleanup, according to Sailors for the Sea, a nonprofit organization.
The anti-plastic straw movement gained momentum when a video showing rescuers pulling a straw from a sea turtle’s nostril went viral in 2015.
Contributing: David Pan, USA TODAY; The Associated Press.
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