PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY, Md. — Prince George’s County is the latest county to join D.C. and neighboring areas in the DMV area in banning plastic straws and stirrers.
The bill, unanimously voted on by the Prince George’s County Council Tuesday, prohibits food services or retail businesses from selling or distributing non-compostable straws and stirrers.
The bill states, “there is a growing trend among local jurisdictions to ban or significantly reduce the use of non-compostable straws and stirrers as a measure towards more sound environmentally sustainable activities. Plastic straws are a component of roadside and marine litter. Plastic straws have a detrimental negative impact on the waterways and Oceans. Many of those end up in our streams and Oceans, polluting the water and killing marine life.”
The ban will take effect July 1, 2020, but business will not be fined prior to Jan. 1, 2021.
The ban will excludes specific instances including beverages that have a plastic straw attached to them during the pre-packaging process, any straws that are made from reusable material and it will remain compliant with local, state and federal disability rights laws.
According to the bill, those with disabilities will still be able to request plastic straws at restaurants.
A similar straw ban is in effect in D.C. and enforced since July 1, 2019.
Areas in Maryland including Charles County, Takoma Park and Rockville have also approved plastic straw bans, but they have yet to take effect.