San Francisco wants to cut its landfill waste down to absolute zero by 2020. While a city-wide plastic bag ban has been in effect for a few years, new legislation approved by the Board of Supervisors this week sets its sights on the bane of tap-water enthusiasts and thirsty environmentalists alike: Bay Area, say goodbye to the plastic water bottle.
The ban will impact people and businesses selling 620ml or less bottles on city properties — that's street fairs, food trucks, park vendors, even the Moscone Convention Center. Will it make a ding in the $US60 billion industry that's continually producing filler for the Great Pacific Garbage Patch with trash that refuses to decompose for millennia? SF will be the first major metropolis to enact a plastic bottle restriction on this scale, so it will be interesting to see if and when others follow suit.
According to the Examiner, the American Beverage Association isn't too pleased — not particularly surprising, considering that both Coca-Cola and Pepsi are members. In a statement, the Association said the effort was "nothing more than a solution in search of a problem. This is a misguided attempt by city supervisors to decrease waste in a city of avid recyclers." Let's just hope the reusable water bottle market doesn't go wild and flood users with a glut of options that counteract the progress of cutting down. [S.F. Examiner]