As of Earth Day 2019, the Los Angeles City Council vote on the ban of plastic straws took effect between restaurants all over the city.
As of October 2019, straws will no longer be available in other restaurants, food vendors, and grocery stores.
From a global perspective, banning plastic straws in the Los Angeles County are just a tiny dent in what environmentalists say is a huge problem.
The majority of plastic pollution comes from Asia, specifically China.
“We need to cooperate with other countries and look at the problem as a world problem, instead of as a domestic problem,” says Vincent Devlahovich, COC professor of Environmental Science.
Annually, the United States is creating over one million tons of plastic a year and half of that is entering our very own ocean.
“Most species now have microplastics in them from the breakdown of plastics in the ocean over the last 60-70 years,” says Devlahovich.
Mass quantities of plastic are constantly being produced, leaving us dependent on plastic. The biggest manufacturer of plastic? Coca-Cola.
According to Professor Devlahovich, environmental scientists confirm we have around 20 years to transform our environment to a more sustainable one before humans begin to be affected.
“We’re losing more than a million species a year which will affect our food chain,” Devlahovich shares. “All of these things are going to push the sixth extinction, which is going to include homosapiens, us.”
COC students can purchase a reusable water bottle or hydroflask here on campus, at the COC bookstore.
Major marketplaces also sell sustainable replacements for household items such as bamboo toothbrushes, glass tupperware, household compost containers, and reusable containers.