Toothless Ordinance

Your Oct. 31 article “Perpetual Plastics” made it sound like Eugene was doing all it needs to do in regards to its Single Use Serviceware ordinance by sending out a letter “last week,” despite the fact that the ordinance went into effect in June.

The article’s tone, with quotes from a city official, makes it sound OK that the city isn’t doing enforcement on their own. It’s up to the public to report businesses that are not complying? Has the public even been educated about the ordinance so that they might know to report bad businesses? No.

Are we to accept that it’s up to the public to clean up our plastics problems? Sure, consumers are partially to blame for buying so much crap, but how about the companies producing the waste, or the politicians/governments allowing this trash into our city/county/state?

The ordinance states:

“A retail food and beverage establishment may not provide single-use serviceware to a customer unless the customer explicitly requests the single-use serviceware or the customer is asked if the customer would like single-use serviceware and the customer responds affirmatively.”

That means that all Eugene restaurants have to stop putting out straws, stirrers, condiments and utensils. You have to ask for them or be asked. Many restaurants are still not complying with this.

There is much work that needs to be done cleaning up our environment. This kind of foot-dragging will hardly keep up with all the waste we are producing.

Jim Flynn


Comments are closed.