Single-use plastic banned from Illinois state parks
Gov. J.B. Pritzker quietly signed a bill last week banning single-use plastic in hundreds of state parks and natural areas.
Why it matters: Most single-use plastic is neither biodegradable nor recyclable. When offered in state parks, it often creates piles of trash in places that are supposed to be protected.
How it works: Starting in 2023, the state has to offer either compostable or recyclable foodware in state parks and natural areas.
- The rule will extend to vendors with contracts at state parks, like concession stands, that renew on or after Jan. 1, 2024.
What they're saying: "It's simple: Eliminating plastic use at our parks is a small step we can take to make a big difference," bill sponsor State Sen. Julie Morrison tells Axios.
- "By implementing more biodegradable and reusable alternatives to plastic, we can put our communities on a path toward sustainability."
What's next: Environmental advocates will be pushing for more.
- "While there are miles more to go when it comes to reducing the demand, production and distribution of single-use plastics, this is an important step in the right direction," Jen Walling, executive director of the Illinois Environmental Council, tells Axios.
- "We hope to help other state agencies find ways to play a bigger role in the reduction of plastic pollution in our state."
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