Pennsylvania communities finally able to take bold action on plastics

Pennsylvanians will finally have the power to make more sustainable choices for themselves and their communities.

Starting on Dec. 8, 2021, communities will be able to ban or limit plastic bags, straws and other single-use plastic items. This opportunity comes after the General Assembly chose not to renew a “preemption” law, which barred cities and towns from implementing local policies to limit use of single-use plastic. It also comes after a lawsuit filed by the City of Philadelphia and surrounding areas, PennPIRG’s network partner PennEnvironment, the Clean Air Council, and the City of Pittsburgh challenging the statewide preemption as unconstitutional.

“Municipalities must be empowered to address plastic pollution when the state legislature won’t. Local governments deal with the brunt of plastic pollution, while cleanup costs for our roads, streets and sewer systems cost taxpayers and ratepayers millions of dollars,” said PennPIRG Advocate Emma Horst-Martz.

“Pennsylvania’s local leaders want to take on plastics pollution. If the legislature won’t help us tackle the plastics crisis, they should get out of the way.”

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Learn more about our campaigns to move Pennsylvania and our country beyond plastics. 

Ban single-use plastic foam items in Pennsylvania

Ban single-use plastic foam items in Pennsylvania

One of the best ways to reduce the amount of trash headed to landfills is to ban items such as plastic foam cups and takeout containers. Tell our governor to ban single-use polystyrene items today.

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Photo: PennEnvironment Advocate Jess Bellwoar and others pose for a photo at a Wildlife Over Waste event in 2018. Credit: Staff


Aaron Colonnese

Content Creator, Editorial & Creative Team, The Public Interest Network

Aaron writes and designs materials with the Creative Team for The Public Interest Network for U.S. PIRG. Aaron lives in Arlington, Massachusetts, and spends his spare time playing drums and going for long walks.

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