An iced coffee, a fast-food soda, and a smoothie all have something in common: they are all refreshing drinks and comes with a single-use plastic straw. The rapid increase in the use of single-use plastic, particularly straws, dumped into fast-food bags, pulled from pails, or plucked off dispensers is devastating the environment. Why do some restaurants not allow straws? It may be convenient, but they’re not a worthwhile trade-off for the environment. In the last few years, various grassroots groups have mobilized to prohibit plastic straw use in all kinds of businesses, from pubs and restaurants to supermarkets and cafeterias.
The Truth About Plastic Straws
The concerning issue about why do some restaurants not allow straws is still ongoing. Many of the most famous institutions, cafés, bars, and restaurants have substituted paper straws for plastic ones in the last few years, helping to reduce the amount of single-use plastic. While some places have chosen to discontinue the use of plastic straws on their own, others are legally required to follow through with legislation and outlaw single-use plastic straws inside the jurisdiction.
A significant movement to promote environmental sustainability is currently sweeping the nation as the anti-single-use plastic movement has successfully raised awareness on a local and macro level. It is a “simple” adjustment that can be made in your daily life.
Are Straws Banned Nationwide?
There are numerous places in the United States where single-use plastic straws are only provided when requested, and this is for a good cause. The rationale why do some restaurants not allow straws since then. Americans use 500 million plastic straws and stirrers every day now. It’s important to point out that most of these straws and stirrers wind up in the environment, where they cause harm to wildlife, including turtles, seals, fish, mammals, and birds.
Most aquatic species ingest the smaller pieces of plastic that have been broken up into microplastics, and these particles are less than 5 millimeters in size. Even though there is no current national ban on single-use plastic straws, some local governments have passed straw bans for municipal, township, city, state, and county purposes.
Cities and States With Single-Use Plastic Ban
Seattle, Washington, became the largest city to enforce a single-use plastic straw ban starting in July 2018. With the announcement that California requires restaurants to only give out single-use plastic straws to customers who specifically request them, beginning January 1, 2019, the state becomes the first to regulate this kind. Five California cities have passed their anti-plastic straw laws: L.A. County, Del Mar, Los Angeles, Davis, and San Francisco, as well as Santa Barbara and Santa Monica.
On April 11, 2019, Oregon took a step further by approving a measure that requires restaurants to serve customers with straw only if they request one. Also, as of July 1, 2019, only plastic straws and cutlery are provided on request in Portland, Oregon. Orbitz has put together an interactive map that shows which other states have a partial ban on plastic straws.
Restaurants Banned Use of Straws
Starbucks has a 2020 goal of phasing out plastic straws, while McDonald’s has set a worldwide standard by committing to eliminate plastic straws in the U.K. and Ireland. Additionally, Bon Appétit Management, Wetherspoon, Caffee Nero, All Bar One, Nando’s, Pizza Express, Costa Coffee, and Pret A Manger have all joined the fight against single-use plastic straws.
Several hotels around the world are instituting plastic straw bans, according to National Geographic. Plastic straws, especially in restaurants, are banned by Hyatt, Disney (except for Tokyo Disney), and SeaWorld Entertainment.
Additionally, certain hotels, like the Ace Hotel, disallow plastic straws. Alaska Airlines also announced in May 2018 that it would replace conventional plastic products with environmentally friendly options, like straws, stirrers, and flatware. Additionally, American Airlines transitioned to bamboo straws, plastic stirrers, and flatware in July 2018. Additionally, Hurtigruten and Royal Caribbean cruise lines committed to ending the usage of plastic straws by the end of 2018.
Pros and Cons of Straw Banning
People seek to ban plastic straws because of their adverse environmental effects. Plastic is severe pollution on a global scale. Approximately two-thirds of the contents of those containers wind up in landfills or the ocean. Plastic pollution is exceptionally destructive to marine life in the ocean, and even the smallest plastic straws can harm marine animals.
The plastic straws cannot be broken down by decomposers, meaning they don’t biodegrade. It is for you to understand why do some restaurants not allow straws. Recycling facilities refuse to accept them because they can jam machines due to their small size. Plastic straws, therefore, cannot be recycled.
Plastic straws are necessary for several people with disability. Some individuals with impairments have no choice but to use straws as their only way to drink. Restricting plastic straws in public could make it more difficult for disabled individuals to eat at restaurants. It also applies to the disabled community. For example, disabled persons may not grasp or pick up a cup correctly. Thus they have to use straws for drinking.
And what is a better alternative? There is also the option of asking businesses to provide plastic straws only when requested. Because customers with disabilities may continue to receive services while also reducing the number of plastic straws that we use, this is a win-win situation.
Plastic straws may or may not save the world, but it is a positive thing in any case. The reason why do some restaurants not allow straws is genuinely for good. As everyone knows that banning plastic straws will not be sufficient for the environmental problem, reducing how much plastic we use every day could be the first step in actually solving the problem. Plastic straws might help save the environment by cutting down on the number of plastic straws used every day. Thousands of sea animals are harmed every year because of plastic straws and other plastic debris in the ocean. Banning plastic straws can benefit the environment, as well as wildlife.