Federal government to phase out single-use plastics in national parks

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The Home Office plans to phase out single-use plastics by 2032 on its lands and facilities, including the nation’s national parks.

The big picture: The announcement, made on World Oceans Day, said the department would find alternative materials to disposable plastics, such as cutlery, bags, cups, bottles, straws and food containers.

  • This is part of President Biden Executive Decreewhich calls on federal agencies to minimize waste and support markets for recycled products, according to the statement from the Department of the Interior.

What they say : “The Department of the Interior has an obligation to take a leadership role in reducing the impact of plastic waste on our ecosystems and our climate,” Secretary Deb Haaland said in a statement Wednesday.

  • “As stewards of the country’s public lands, including national parks and national wildlife refuges, and as the agency responsible for the conservation and management of fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats , we are uniquely positioned to do better for our Earth,” she added.

By the numbers: At least 14 million tons of plastic end up in the ocean each year, according to the department.

  • Plastic accounts for 80% of all marine debris found from surface waters to deep-sea sediments.

Go further: Global plastic waste is expected to almost triple by 2060

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