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[GreenYes] go Oakland !!!


06/21/06 8:15 PDT


The Oakland City Council voted 7-1 early this morning to approve an
ordinance banning Styrofoam, technically known as polystyrene foam, in the

The ordinance requires the transition from non-biodegradable products to
biodegradable and compostable disposables if the alternatives exist at the
same price or less.

Councilmember Jean Quan, who introduced the ordinance, said Styrofoam-type
waste is a blight on the community and cited a study that shows 15 percent
of litter collected in storm drains is plastic foam.

The ordinance will take effect Jan. 1. City officials will enforce it by
responding to citizen complaints.

"Oakland is a pretty environmentally-conscious city, so I think we will get
a lot of complaints and then the city manager will investigate them," Quan

Vendors who violate the ordinance would first be given a warning and then
would be cited and fined up to $500 for additional offenses.

Quan said the plastic foam ban and move toward biodegradable alternatives is
part of a citywide effort to be a "zero waste" city by 2020, meaning
producing no waste that ends up in landfills.

The ordinance was opposed by the California Restaurant Association and some
restaurant owners.

The City Council also angered restaurant owners earlier this year by
imposing a litter tax, which targets fast food restaurants and convenience
stores to fund litter clean-up crews. Oakland is the first city in the
nation to have such an ordinance.

The City Council approved the Styrofoam ban about 2:45 a.m. today at the end
of a marathon meeting that started at 6 p.m. Tuesday.


Eric Lombardi

Executive Director/CEO

Eco-Cycle Inc

Boulder, CO. USA


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