Redwood City, California, to consider PS ban, might adopt San Mateo County's template that prohibits single-use disposable food containers but exempts prepackaged foods; the ban would help meet city's mandated 40% trash reduction

LOS ANGELES , February 6, 2012 () –

The city council of Redwood City, California, is to consider imposing a ban on polystyrene (PS) food containers at its meeting on Feb. 6, reported The Daily Journal on Feb. 6.

If the decision is made to move ahead with such a ban, the city could either adopt San Mateo County’s template or draft its own ordinance. Approximately 550 businesses in Redwood City would be affected by the ban.

The ban would help the city meet a 40% reduction in its trash mandated by the municipal regional stormwater permit, according to a report by City Manager Bob Bell, reported The Daily Journal.

The county’s ban includes single-use disposable products used in the food industry but excludes prepackaged food, as well as certain exemptions for food vendors at San Francisco International Airport.

Special exemptions for one year may be granted by the county's Environmental Health Division in cases of undue hardship or if suitable alternatives are unavailable, according to the county’s ban, which took effect last July 1.

Violations carry fines starting at US$100 for the first offence and escalating to US$500 for the third offence, The Daily Journal reported.

If Redwood City adopts the county’s template, the county would help with education and outreach and the Environmental Health Division would handle inspections and enforcement.

So far, Half Moon Bay, Burlingame and Foster City have adopted the county’s policy; San Carlos has told city staff to draft an ordinance; and Belmont is considering similar action.

San Bruno, Pacifica, South San Francisco and Millbrae have passed their own ordinances that differ in the products included, exemptions allowed, the appeals process and enforcement measures.

The primary source of this article is The Daily Journal, San Mateo, California, on Feb. 6, 2012.


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