GAIA Zero Waste MasterPlan - Page 43



Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) 43
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3. Legislating Reuse and Working with
Businesses
BAN DISPOSABLES AND CREATE REUSE/REFILL SYSTEMS
There are over 400 bans or taxes on single-use plastic items in cities and states across the country[1].
Bans on single-use plastic items can be an effective, top-down approach to reducing unnecessary
plastic consumption and removing plastics from the waste stream. However, replacing plastics with
other materials that still require resource extraction and disposal is not the long-term solution. Instead,
cities must consider the zero waste hierarchy to prioritize reusable and refillable solutions in their
legislation and ensure that zero waste alternatives to single-use plastics are readily available. This
approach can also be viable in municipalities in states with plastic preemption laws[2], also known as
“bans on bans”. Below are examples of how some cities have phased out single-use plastic and promoted
reusable and refillable systems.
BAG LAWS ACROSS
THE COUNTRY
MAP KEY
statewide bag laws
states with locally adopted bag laws
that aren’t preempted
states preemption law allegedly in place
but local bag law recently adopted
(FL only,lawsuit pending)
state preemption on bans only (MN only)
state preemption
*notes: HI has a de facto state law because
all inhabited counties have local bag laws.
TX preemption is based upon litigation over
an existing statute.
NC state pilot project for Outer Banks was
repealed.
Adapted from Map developed by Korin Tangtrakul for PlasticBagLaws.org
Last updated August 13, 2019
1 Zeitlin, M. (2019, August 27). Do plastic bag taxes or bans curb waste? 400 cities and states tried it out. Vox.
https://www.vox.com/the-highlight/2019/8/20/20806651/plastic-bag-ban-straw-ban-tax
2 Gibbens, S. (2019, August 15). See the complicated landscape of plastic bans in the U.S. National Geographic.
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/2019/08/map-shows-the-complicated-landscape-of-plastic-bans/#close

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