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Would You Support a Plastic-Foam Container Ban?

New York's Mayor said outlawing the packaging would curtail an annual waste stream of about 20,000 tons of plastic foam.

In his final State of the City address, Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed a citywide ban on plastic-foam food packaging, which environmentalists have derided for years.

If the mayor gets his way, New York would become the first east coast city to implement the ban, which already exists on various levels in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Seattle.

A restaurant owner who spoke to a Patch staffer in Brooklyn argued that the ban would hurt the economy, though many others also support the ban.

Our question: Should the ban exist statewide? Let us know in comments.

LJ February 16, 2013 at 03:16 PM
You cant make a decision like that without more information. What do the replacement containers cost? Paper coffee cups perform horribly compared to styro. They do not keep your drink hot ( or cold) they way styro does. I think its possible to use cardboard food containers instead of styro but again, what is the cost differential?? Are they also going to ban those stryo paking peanuts? If so, what replaces the styro? Paper doesnt do as good a job as styro there either. Also, how many jobs will be lost in the styro industry if all states adopt this measure? I actually prefer things which are low impact for the environment. But cost does figure into some decisions. And if other products dont do the job as well as styro, why would people want to use them? We need some form of biodegradable styro which will degrade in a few years in a landfill.
Jenn February 17, 2013 at 02:06 PM
LJ - they have made biodegradeable "styro" peanuts for a long long time - they're made from cornstarch and dissolve in water. I use them exclusively now for everything I ship. A little more money, but for me it's worth it. There are also cornstarch based forks/spoons/knives that take a few months in compost, but they break down. I also believe that cost does have to come into play - as with any business. However - if you eliminate a choice and the option doesn't exist, businesses (and people) adapt. We are an ever-adapting society. The Chinese have been using cardboard containers for EVER with no leaking due to design. Whole Foods uses cardboard containers at their salad and hot food bars. The fast food places figured out that cardboard boxes or paper wrappers work just as well. As for coffee cups, a friend of mine has a shop in NYC an he uses these corrugated cardboard cups - keeps the coffee hot, hands stay not-so-hot, and his customers like them because they are "green". Ban or not, we always find a way to continue forward.
Robert Sheldon February 18, 2013 at 12:55 PM
Another bizarre attempt by the NYC mayor to create a legacy by " saving " mankind from itself. The cost and benefit from his idea are unknown. Perhaps we in Nassau should focus on "saving " our almost bankrupt county sinking quality of life and oppressive taxation . Come on already, be serious.
donna ingber February 18, 2013 at 01:26 PM
I do think that Green is the way to go for the environment! Robert Sheldon sums up the underlying issue of the diversion!

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