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 21 ounce 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 $60 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]