New Jersey Assembly Passes Strongest Ban on Single-Use Plastics in Nation & Promote Reusable Bags by a 48-24-7 Vote

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Environment New Jersey

Trenton – The New Jersey Assembly passed A1978 by a broad majority of 48-24-7 which will be the strongest single-use plastics ban in the nation by banning single-use plastics bags and polystyrene, restricts straws to on demand only and phase out paper bags at larger grocery stores. The bill now goes to the desk of Gov. Murphy and he has 45 days to act on the legislation. The legislation, if signed into law, will go into effect in early spring 2022.

Since plastics legislation was introduced more than two years ago, many other states, including New York, have passed legislation similar to S864/A1978. Currently, eight states ban single-use plastic bags, four states have banned polystyrene foam food ware, and three states have implemented a straw-by-request policy.  Fifty-five municipalities in the Garden State have passed and implemented local laws reducing single-use plastics – and now more than 1 million New Jerseyans live in towns and counties that have taken action to address the plastic pollution crisis.

Doug O’Malley, director of Environment New Jersey, issued the following statement:

“New Jersey Assembly voted to pass the strongest single-use ban on plastics in the country to prioritize our wildlife and our communities over endless plastic waste polluting our waterways,” said Doug O’Malley, director of Environment New Jersey. “Plastic and polystyrene items we use for 15 minutes should not end up in our environment and communities for endless generations. Polystyrene cannot be cost-effectively recycled on a mass scale and we need to transition to reusable bags. We urge Governor Murphy to sign this legislation as quickly as possible.”