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EXPANDED POLYSTYRENE ORDINANCE



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    What is the expanded polystyrene ordinance?

The Ordinance adds Chapter 8.63 to the Municipal Code of Long Beach.




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Report a Business Out of Compliance with the Polystyrene Ordinance

     Why did the City adopt this ordinance?

The City adopted this ordinance to address 3 major issues:

  • Litter – Expanded Polystyrene easily becomes litter because it is lightweight and breaks up into microplastics during travel, making it hard to recover and clean up. Expanded Polystyrene will also not degrade in our lifetime.
  • Health - The National Institute of Health (NIH) states that styrene is a “reasonably anticipated human carcinogen.”
  • Waste Prevention - Food-soiled expanded polystyrene is not recyclable and is designed to only be used one time. The City wants to prevent waste and decrease the amount of single-use disposable material.

     When did the ordinance take effect?

    Where else are there similar bans?

As of 2019, there are over 120 California cities and counties with ordinances prohibiting the use of polystyrene, 26 of which include the retail sales of products. As of 2019, 20 California cities and counties have ordinances restricting the use of straws.


What are the restrictions around the use of straws?

  • Straws must only be given upon request at all food establishments.
  • Straws given upon request must NOT be made of plastic or bioplastic.
    • To comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, a Plastic Beverage Straw may be given upon request to individuals with disabilities.