New York sues PepsiCo over plastic pollution along river
New York's attorney general sued PepsiCo Wednesday, accusing the food and beverage giant of "endangering" people's health and the ecosystem with pollution from its single-use plastic products and making "misleading statements" about combating the problem.
The big picture: The lawsuit comes as negotiations on a landmark global plastic treaty kick into a new gear with a UN summit in Nairobi, Kenya, this week. PepsiCo was among over 70 brands that last year called for the adoption of the treat to cut production of the material.
- The company has pledged to aim to make all of its products 100% "recyclable, compostable, biodegradable or reusable" by 2025.
Driving the news: N.Y. AG Letitia James alleges in the suit that PepsiCo's single-use plastic products like Gatorade and Cheetos "significantly" contribute to high levels of plastic pollution along the Buffalo River, which she says is contaminating drinking water and harming wildlife.
- The lawsuit, filed in Buffalo, accuses the company of failing to warn consumers about the potential health and environmental risks of its single-use plastic packaging.
By the numbers: A 2022 waste survey found that of the 1,916 pieces of plastic trash collected with an identifiable brand, over 17% was produced by PepsiCo, according to James' office.
What they're saying: "No company is too big to ensure that their products do not damage our environment and public health," James said in a statement.
- "All New Yorkers have a basic right to clean water, yet PepsiCo's irresponsible packaging and marketing endanger Buffalo's water supply, environment, and public health."
- Representatives for PepsiCo did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.