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They are how we protect our special coastal places

09 • 25 • 2014

Oahu Chapter helps pass Plastic Bag Bill amendment!

In 2012, Surfrider activists helped lead a campaign to pass a plastic bag ban on Oahu, making Hawaii the first state to ban these toxic tumbleweeds in every county. The bill was signed into law, but it created a big loophole that still allowed so-called "biodegradable plastic bags," which can contain up to 95% plastic. These bags quickly break down into micro-plastics, which are detrimental to the environment and can be digested by terrestrial and marine creatures. Bill 38 was created to close that loophole, though it still contained language allowing compostable bags (which are certified to contain no plastic, only inert organic ingredients). The Oahu Chapter worked with other environmental groups to pass it through the Honolulu City Council (which includes all of Oahu), and the Mayor signed it into law at a ceremony on Sept. 25th, 2014 with representatives from the Surfrider Foundation, Sustainable Coastlines and Kokua Hawaii Foundation.