T&E Item 3
October 30,2014
Worksession
MEMORANDUM
October 28, 2014
TO:
FROM:
Transportation, Infrastructure, Ener yan
Josh Hamlin, Legislative
Attome~
aste (Trash) - Food Service Products ­
SUBJECT:
Worksession:
Bill 41-14, Solid
Packaging Materials - Requirements
Bill 41-14, Solid Waste (Trash) - Food Service Products - Packaging Materials ­
Requirements, sponsored by Councilmember Riemer, Council Vice President Leventhal, and
Councilmember EIrich, was introduced on September 9. A public hearing was held on October
14.
Bill 41-14 would:
(1) prohibit the use of certain expanded polystyrene food service products by food
service businesses;
(2) require the use of compostable or recyclable food service ware by the County,
County contractors or lessees, and food service businesses;
(3) prohibit the sale of certain expanded polystyrene food service products and
polystyrene loose fill packaging;
(4) provide for enforcement; and
(5) generally amend County law regarding environmentally acceptable food service
products and packaging materials.
Background
In 2012, the Council approved Resolution No. 17-522, expressing support for the
elimination of expanded polystyrene foodware in County Government cafeterias and
encouraging other public and private food service facilities to also consider the elimination of the
use of polystyrene foodware (See ©8-9). Expanded polystyrene ("polystyrene foam"),
frequently referred to as Styrofoam, is commonly used in disposable food containers, both for
prepackaged and carry-out prepared food. This Bill builds upon the Council's action in
Resolution 17-522, generally prohibiting certain uses of polystyrene foam food service products,
prohibiting the sale of certain polystyrene foam products, and requiring the use of compostable
or recyclable food service ware. In a September 2 memorandum, Councilmember Riemer briefly
discussed the basis for his proposal (See
©
10). Proponents of reducing or restricting the use of
polystyrene foam say that it is harmful to both the environment and human health.
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Environmental Impacts
Advocates for limiting the use of polystyrene foam cite the pervasive presence of the
foam as litter in the marine environment as justification for a ban.
I
A local example of this
problem has been demonstrated by the "trash trap" in the District of Columbia along Nash Run,
which flows into the Anacostia River. According to a 2010 report prepared by the Anacostia
Watershed Society for the District Department of Environment, about 22% of average trash
volume collected by the trap was polystyrene foam.
2
This problem is not merely aesthetic; like
other plastics, polystyrene foam photodegrades, breaking down into smaller and smaller pieces,
but never really going away. Fish and other aquatic wildlife often mistake the tiny pieces of
foam for food, ingest them, and suffer harm as a result.
3
Human Health Concerns
Styrene, a main ingredient in making polystyrene foam, is listed as "a reasonable
anticipated human carcinogen" in the U.S. Department ofHealth and Human Service's
Report on
Carcinogens,
12th
Edition
(2011). The primary risk is to workers improperly exposed to styrene
in the manufacturing process, with the primary non-occupational exposure through cigarette
smoke. However, styrene may also leach into food from polystyrene containers used for food
products, with the level of migration of styrene to food dependent on a number of factors.
4
In
September of this year, in light of these health concerns, as well as environmental concerns,
several members of the United States House of Representatives sent a letter to House Speaker
John
A.
Boehner, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and Committee on House Administration
Chair Candice S. Miller, requesting reconsideration of the use of polystyrene foam in the House
of Representatives cafeterias (©11-17).
Laws in Other Jurisdictions
The use of polystyrene foam
has
been restricted or prohibited in many local jurisdictions,
both county and municipal, throughout California and in the Pacific Northwest.
5
Among large
jurisdictions on the East coast, New York City enacted a ban in 2013,6 and the District of
Columbia did so in June of this year.
7
A ban has been considered in Baltimore City, but has not
been enacted, and bans have been or currently are being considered in Philadelphia, Boston, and
Chicago.
http://www.c1eanwater.org/
fil
es/publications/ca/cwa fact sheet polystyrene litter 2011 03.pdf
2
See pages ix - xii of
"Demonstration ofTrash Reduction Technologies in the Anacostia Watershed (Nash Run
Trash Trap Project) Final Technical Report,"
found at:
http://green.dc.gov/sites/defau Itifiles/dc/sites/ddoe/publicationiattachmentsiNash
RJ!!LJI
Final Tech Report Enti
re.pdf.
3
http://www.anchoragemuseum.org/images/downloadslgyre/Lesson3 EffectsofMarineDebris.pdf
I
4
http://ntp.niehs.nih~gov/ntp/roc/twelfth/profiles/styrene.pdf
The cities of Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose, and the counties of Marin, Los Angeles, and
Santa Cruz are some of the larger Califomiajurisdictions to implement some form of polystyrene foam ban. Seattle,
Washington, and Portland Oregon have also done so. A list of cities and counties with such bans can be found at:
http://www.groundswell.orglmap-which-cities-have-banned-plastic-foam/
6
http://legistar.council.nyc.gov Niew.ashx?M=F &1D=29387S6&GUI D=SA837168-3319-4S0D-8A40­
FDFS97A3ESCC
7
http://lims.dccouncil.us/\ayouts/IS/upJoader/Download.aspx?legislationid=30722&filename::B20-Q573­
SignedAct.pdf (pp.7-9).
S
2
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Current local laws vary in their scope, with some banning the use of polystyrene foam
only for food service, i.e., leftovers and carry-out, while others extend the prohibition to the sale
of certain polystyrene foam products, including plates, cups and packing materials. Many of the
local laws banning certain uses of polystyrene foam also require that
any
disposable food service
ware used for food service businesses, such as plates, cups, utensils, and napkins, be
compostable or recyclable.
Bill
41-14
The provisions of Bill 41-14 prohibiting the use of certain polystyrene foam food service
products, and requiring the use of compostable or recyclable food service ware, are similar to
those of the recently enacted District of Columbia law, with identically staggered effective dates.
This consistency between neighboring jurisdictions should make it easier for businesses
operating in both jurisdictions to adjust their practices.
Bill 41-14 would prohibit food service businesses (restaurants, grocery stores,
institutional cafeterias, etc.) from using "expanded polystyrene (foam) food service products,"
such as containers, plates, cups, trays, egg cartons, effective January 1, 2016. Products packaged
outside the County before receipt by the food service business, and materials used to package
raw meat, seafood, or poultry are exempt from the prohibition.
The Bill would also require the County and County contractors and lessees to use
compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware, as those terms are defmed in the Bill,
effective 90 days after the Bill becomes law. "Disposable food service ware" is a broader term
than, and inclusive of, "expanded polystyrene food service products." The requirement to use
compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware would apply to food service businesses
beginning January 1,2017.
.
Bill 41-14 would also prohibit the
sale
of polystyrene loose fill packaging, commonly
referred to as "packing peanuts," and expanded polystyrene food service products, effective
January 1, 2016. This provision is similar to provisions of the law in New York City and several
California jurisdictions.
The Executive would be required to publish, and update annually, a list of vendors
offering affordable compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware products. Also, the
Executive would be required to determine whether there is no affordable compostable or
recyclable alternative to partiCUlar disposable food service ware items, and list such items on an
exemption list. The prohibitions and requirements of the law would not apply to products on the
exemption list. The Department of Environmental Protection would be responsible for
enforcement of the law. A violation would be a Class B violation, and the County Attorney
would be authorized to seek injunctive relief.
Public Hearing
There were 24 speakers at the public hearing. Dan Locke, Chief of the Division of Solid
Waste Services, testified in support of the Bill on behalf of the Executive (©19).
Mr.
Locke
cited the value of the Bill's provisions as a compliment to the County's efforts to reduce litter
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and pollution in County waterways as required by the County's MS4 pennit. Conservation
Montgomery (©20), the Sierra Club of Montgomery County (©21-22), the League of Women
Voters of Montgomery County (©23), and the D.C. Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation (©24)
all testified in support of the Bill. These organizations all expressed the belief that the Bill would
reduce the amount of polystyrene foam pollutants in the County.
The Alice Ferguson Foundation (©25-26), the Rock Creek Conservancy (©27-28),
Neighbors of the Northwest Branch (©29-30), the Anacostia Watershed Society (©31-35), and
the Sugarloaf Citzens' Association (©36) all offered testimony in support of Bill 41-14. These
organizations referenced the threats posed by polystyrene foam to human and environmental
health, and both the Alice Ferguson Foundation and the Anacostia Watershed Society expressed
the view that, like the carryout bag tax, this Bill could be a catalyst for behavior change leading
to societal benefit. Molly Hauck also shared her concerns about the polystyrene foam's effects
on human health and the environment, and stated that there are competitively priced recyclable
and compostable alternatives (©37-38).
Three members of the Young Activists Club in Takoma Park spoke in support of the Bill
(©39-43). They asked the Council to consider expanding the Bill's prohibition beyond
polystyrene foam to include rigid polystyrene such as that used in some plastic cups and clear
plastic "clamshell" containers, and requested that the Bill be applicable to MCPS. Nadine Bloch
reiterated the requests of the Young Activists to include rigid polystyrene and MCPS in the Bill's
prohibition (©44). Brenda Platt of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance testified in support,
offering Seattle as an example of a phased approach to moving from polystyrene foam to
recyclable or compostable food service ware (©45-51). Trash Free Maryland and Jennifer
Chambers also supported the Bill, echoing many of the sentiments of other supporters (©52-54).
Bruce Bereano, on behalf of Safeway, indicated support for the Bill if it
was
amended to exempt
raw and butchered meat, seafood and poultry trays from the Bill's recyclable/compostable
requirement.
8
The Restaurant Association of Maryland opposed the bill as drafted (©55), stating a
particular concern about the cost and perfonnance of alternative compostable or recyclable
disposable food service ware, positing that much of the required compostable ware will still end
up in the regular solid waste stream. However, the Association'S members were not as
concerned with the prohibition on the use of polystyrene foam food service products.
9
Dart
Container Corporation, manufacturer of polystyrene foam food service products, opposed the
Bill, touting the efficiency and cost benefits of foam over paper and the recyclability of
polystyrene foam (©56-63). Dart also offered San Francisco and Carmel, California as examples
ofjurisdictions where foam bans did not reduce the volume of litter, but rather changed the type
of litter.
1o
Environmental Resources Planning, LLC also opposed the Bill, contending that
polystyrene foam food service products make up a small percentage (1.1 %) of litter, and that a
The Bill already exempts these products from the ban on polystyrene foam food service products. See lines 58-69
at©4.
9
See video testimony of Melvin Thompson, Restaurant Association of Maryland,
at
00:16:30 of the October 14,
2014 public hearing at: http://montgomerycountvmd.granicus.com/MediaPlaver.php?view id=6&clip id=8079
10
Note however that San Francisco's 2008 litter audit, conducted one year after the City enacted its polystyrene
foam ban, showed a 36% decrease in
polystyrene foam
litter. The 2008 audit can
be
accessed at:
http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/rwqcb2/water issues/programs/stormwater/MRP/02­
2012/CommentsIDartlStaff Exhibits.pdf
8
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foam ban will not resolve litter issues (©64-65). The Maryland Retailers Association opposed
Bill 41-14, asserting that its provisions would increase costs without reducing litter or helping
the County achieve its sustainability goals (©66-67). Bill Kominers also spoke in opposition,
questioning whether there is a legitimate alternative to polystyrene foam packing peanuts.
In
addition to the oral testimony at the public hearing, written testimony was received
from the American Chemistry Council and Lorenzo Bellamy of Alexander and Cleaver, P.A.
(©68-72). Both urged the County to explore recycling polystyrene foam, and the American
Chemistry Council disputed the contentions that polystyrene foam presented a threat to human
health.
Issues for Committee Discussion
1.
What are the alternatives to polystyrene foam food service and packing products?
A threshold question to considering a prohibition on the use of polystyrene foam is "what
are the alternatives?" The demand for food packaging alternatives to foam has been growing at
least since the 1990s, when McDonald's phased out the use of foam clamshells for its
sandwiches.
II
A number of restaurants have already moved away from using foam food
packaging products, and McDonald's, as well as Dunkin' Donuts, have both recently committed
to phasing out their use of foam CUpS.12 Over the past 15 years, dozens of local jurisdictions
have passed restrictions on the use of polystyrene foam.
13
With this growing demand, there is
now a fairly robust market
ofpol~styrene
foam alternatives,14 from paper
lS
to polylactic acid
l6
to
mushroom-based foam products.
7
The Green Restaurant Association is a reference resource for
these products.
IS
San Francisco, whose ban on polystyrene foam food packaging took effect in
2007, has published a list of vendors of compostable and recyclable food service ware (©73-74).
Also, San Jose, California, which enacted a polystyrene foam ban
in
2013, has published a fairly
extensive list of alternative food packaging products, sorted by product category with vendor and
cost information (©75-88). Bill 41-14 requires the Executive to publish a similar list of vendors,
and update it annually for at least five years after it is first published.
There are also several alternatives to polystyrene foam packing peanuts.
In
addition to
sealed air packing materials which are widely used by online retailers such as Amazon.com,19
there are packing peanuts available that are plant_20 and starch-based and biodegradable?1
haul sells a number of recyclable or biodegradable packing
su~plies
on its website, including
packing peanuts22 and paper-based expandable packing material.
3
http://www.nytimes.com/1990/11 /02/business/packaging-and-pubJic-image-mcdonald-s-fills-a-big-order.html
McDonald's competitors Burger King and Wendy's had already stopped using foam clamshells by this time.
12
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/20J4-09-J7/dunkin-donuts-tests-recvclable-cups-as-foam-loses-favor.html
13
See footnote 5.
14
http://www.sustainablefoodservice.comlcat/biodegradabJe-foodservice-products.htm
15
http://www.fold-pak.comlsustainability/sustainablepackagingsolutions.htm
16
http://www.plasticingenuity.com/green-ingenuity/pla-materia
lsi
17
http://www.ecovativedesign.com/
18
http://www.dinegreen.com/restaurants/el1dorsed prods.asp
19
http://www.sealedairprotects.comfNNEN!sustainability/recycle inflate.aspx
20
http://puffystufftn.com/about.html
21
httl2://www.starchtech.comlbiodegradable-packing-peanuts.html
22
httl2:llwww.uhaul.com/MovingSupplies/Protective-stuff/Biodegradable-Packing-Peanuts?id=730
II
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2.
Is recycling expanded polystyrene a viable alternative to a ban?
In
its testimony at the public hearing, Dart Container Corporation suggested that
recycling polystyrene foam would be an alternative to banning it. Dart claimed that the foam is
"100% recyclable" 'into pellets used for durable plastic products such as building insulation,
plastic lumber, and picture frames. Dart cited Sacramento and Los Angeles, California as
examples of municipal curbside collection of polystyrene foam, and said that the company is
working to establish other such programs.
The question of the recyclability of polystyrene foam arises each time a jurisdiction
considers a ban. When the question arises, so too does a discussion of the problems associated
with a foam recycling program (See ©89). The first challenge is the low density of the material,
which makes shipping it quite inefficient. The limited market for polystyrene foam also presents
a problem, as the lack of a stable market makes investment in establishing a program somewhat
risky. There would be a cost involved in setting up a drop-off foam recycling program in the
County, as accepting the foam would require an attendant, and staff understands that there is
currently no space at the transfer facility to accommodate such a program. Curbside pickup is
often not considered feasible because of both the cost and the tendency for foam products to
break up and blow away - both related to the low density of the product. Also, even in
jurisdictions that provide curbside pickup for foam recycling, few accept packing peanuts.
24
Perhaps the most vexing problem encountered in recycling polystyrene foam food
packaging is food contamination.
It
is not evident what amount of "contamination" renders foam
unrecyclable, but in other jurisdictions that have looked at the issue, contamination has been a
substantial problem.
In
Los Angeles County, California, "a survey of waste haulers and material
recovery facilities (MRFs) found that the overwhelming majority of haulers and facilities do not
accept EPS food containers from curbside recycling" (See ©90-97). When San Jose was
considering its ban in 2011, City staff research found that of 32 California jurisdictions that had
implemented curbside collection of polystyrene foam for recycling, 15 were collecting
polystyrene foam food packaging but were sending it to the landfill, and eight had discontinued
the collection due to contamination issues.
As
of 2011, only seven of the 32 were actively
collecting the foam for recycling (©98-100).
3.
Will "compostable" disposable food service ware required by the Bill be composted,
or will it still end up in the trash?
The Restaurant Association of Maryland expressed concern at the public hearing
regarding the Bill's requirement that all disposable food service ware be recyclable or
compostable by January 1, 2017. By suggesting that even compostable or recyclable products
would end up in a landfill, the issue was framed as the imposition of an expense on food service
businesses that would not produce a corresponding social benefit.
In
the absence of an existing
County compo sting program, this suggestion is a valid concern. It must also be considered that
in common anaerobic landfills, even biodegradable or compostable items do not break down due
to lack of the oxygen and microorganisms necessary for degradation or decomposition.
23
http://www.uhaul.com/Mov ingSupplies/Protecti ve-stuff/ExpandOS-H
i
gh-Perfonnanee-Paeki ng:
Material?id:= 15962
24
http://www.eruth911.com/reeycling-guidelhow-to-recvele-paeking-peanutsl
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The
~uestion
is really one of timing. The County's approved Comprehensive Solid
Waste Plan2 includes as part of its summary plan of action to "examine the feasibility of
targeting additional materials types for recycling including food waste generated at restaurants,
schools and institutions." (©101-102) Prince George's County26 and Howard County,27 as well
as Takoma Park,28 are currently piloting food waste compo sting programs, and the District of
Columbia recently passed a polystyrene ban that includes a compostable/recyclable mandate.
These developments may create momentum to begin a regional food waste compo sting program.
Requiring disposable food service ware to be compostable or recyclable facilitate this action item
by removing non-compostable disposable food service ware as a
~otential
contaminant of
compostable food waste. Facilities such as Jepson Prairie Organics
9
and Cedar Grove30 in
Washington are examples of composting facilities that compost food service ware. Location of a
facility in the densely populated Mid-Atlantic region may prove challenging, however; Peninsula
Compost LLC's Wilmington Organics composting facility was recently ordered to shut down
due to odor problems. 31
4.
Should the Bill's prohibitions include rigid polystyrene food service products?
There were requests at the public hearing from members of the Young Activists Club,
and from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, to expand the Bill's prohibition to rigid
polystyrene products in addition to polystyrene foam. Such an expansion would then cover
many of the plastic cups and clear plastic clamshell containers.
32
While rigid polystyrene is not
covered by the Bill's prohibition on expanded polystyrene food service products, it is not
currently recycled "using recycling collection programs provided in the County,'.33 and is not
compostable. Thus, the use of rigid polystyrene disposable food service ware by the County,
County contractors and lessees, and food service businesses would not be permitted under the
Bill's requirement that disposable food service ware be compostable or recyclable. This
requirement takes effect
90
days after the Bill becomes law for County agencies, departments,
contractors and lessees 34 and January 1,2017 for food service businesses.
A number of the issues associated with recycling polystyrene foam, such as foam's low
density and vulnerability to contamination, are less problematic with rigid polystyrene,
http;llwww.montgomerycountymd.gov/sws/programs/solid-waste-plan.html
26
http;//www.menv.comlblog/prince-georges-county-mes-cut-ribbon-on-new-food-scrap-composting-project-at­
westem-branch-yard-waste-composting-facilityl
27
http://www.howardcountymd.gov/foodscraps.htm
2ll
http://www.takomaparkmd.gov/publicworkslfood-waste-collection
29
http://www.jepsonprairieorganics.com/index.htm
30
http://cedar-grove.com/
31
http://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/locaI/20 14/
1012
J
lodor-plagued-compost-plant-ordered­
shutl17674401/
32
Not all plastic cups and food containers would be covered; there are plastic cups and clear plastic clamshell
containers made from PET (polyethylene terephthalate) and from polypropylene which are already recyclable and
recycled in the County recycling program.
33
http://m.montgomerycountymd.gov/sws/how/plastics.html
34
But note that
"a County facility, agency, department, contractor, or lessee may use disposable food service ware
already purchased as of the effective date of this Act until the supplies are exhausted or until January 1, 2017,
whichever is earlier, including disposable food service ware that the County facility, agency, department, contractor
or lessee is obligated to purchase under any contracts in force on the effective date of this Act." Lines 107-113 at
©5-6.
25
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increasing the probability that it may at some point become feasible to recycle in the County.
Because of this possibility, and the practical impact of the Bill's requirement that compostable or
recyclable disposable food service ware must be used exclusively, effective no later than January
1, 2017, staff does not recommend amending Bill 41-14 to expressly prohibit the use of rigid
polystyrene.
5.
What is the fiscal and economic impact of the Bill?
A common refrain among the Bill's opponents, and opponents to similar laws elsewhere,
is that polystyrene foam is the most cost effective means of packaging certain food products, and
that it would be too much of a burden on businesses to switch to alternative packaging. The
Executive's fiscal and economic impact statement (FEIS) (see ©103-1O8) seems to support the
assertion that the cost would be substantial. The FEIS includes an estimate that the enactment of
Bill 41-14 would result in: 1) Approximately $219,000 in additional annual County expenses
(MCPS: $60,000, HHS: $159,000; 2) $75,000 per year plus a one-time $40,000 vehicle expense,
or a reduction of 800 HHS inspections per year, depending on which agency took enforcement
responsibility, for dedicated enforcemene
5;
and 3) $16.2 million in lost profits for County
restaurants.
The Office of Legislative Oversight (OLO) reviewed the FEIS, focusing on the estimate
of $16.2 million in lost restaurant profits (©109-112). OLO identified four key variables that if
changed based on reasonable assumptions could dramatically affect the estimate, with the range
of possible estimates going as low as about $2 million. Additionally OLO noted that in several
jurisdictions in which polystyrene bans have been imposed, additional costs on businesses can be
mitigated through the establishment of purchasing co-ops to bring businesses together and
achieve economies of scale. The District of Columbia is considering the establishment of such a
co-op which, should Bill 41-14 be enacted, could possibly be expanded to include County food
service businesses. When considering implementing its own polystyrene foam ban in 2012, San
Jose, California commissioned a comprehensive economic impact study which includes
observations consistent with those of OLO. The San Jose study included a great deal of
information about the potential impacts of a ban, which though geographically focused toward
the Bay Area in California, is pertinent to the consideration ofBi1l41-14. The Introduction and
Findings of the study are at ©113-116.
36
Bill 41-14 also provides for the creation of an "exemption list" by the Executive. This
list would include disposable food service ware products for which the Executive determines
there is no affordable compostable or recyclable alternative, and would be updated annually.
While the term "affordable" is currently not defined in the Bill, it could be defined relative to the
purchase cost of a non-compostable, non-recyclable alternative.
37
Additionally, Chapter 48
includes a more general hardship waiver provision at Section 48-3(b), which provides that "the
Director may waive any requirement of this Chapter when: (1) practical difficulties, undue
hardships or other good cause prevents any person from carrying out this Chapter; and (2) the
The FEIS indicated that there would be no additional personnel cost ifenforcement is complaint driven.
36
The full San Jose Economic Impact Analysis can be found at:
http://www3.sanjoseca.gov/clerkiCommitteeAgendaffE/20
J
21203ffE20 121203 d5attC.pdf
37
For example, San Francisco's Food Service Waste Reduction Ordinance defines "affordable" as "purchasable for
not more than IS percent more than the non-biodegradable, non-compostable, or non-recyclable altemative(s)."
3S
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waiver is not contrary to the spirit and intent of this Chapter and other applicable law, and does
not materially impair the public welfare and safety."
6.
How would the Bill be enforced?
As drafted, Bill 41-14 does not specifY whether its provisions would be enforced on an
inspection- or complaint-driven basis. The FEIS indicates a cost for inspection-driven
enforcement of either $75,000 per year plus a one-time $40,000 vehicle expense or 800 fewer
HHS inspections per year, depending on whether DEP or HHS is the lead enforcement agency.
Alternatively, according to the FEIS there would be no additional cost for complaint-driven
enforcement. The Bill's enforcement provisions are similar to those in Section 48-49, which
provides for enforcement of the Recycling Article. Section 48-3 establishes that the Director of
DEP must administer the Chapter.
In
his testimony on behalf of the Executive, Solid Waste
Services Division Chief Dan Locke suggested that enforcement would be on a complaint-driven
basis with DEP as the lead agency, which is consistent with the provisions of the Bill and
existing law.
Section 48-58, lines 94-98 at ©5, includes a provision authorizing the County Attorney or
.any affected party to seek injunctive relief for repeated violations in a court with jurisdiction.
Because the County does not have the authority to create a private cause of action, this Section
should be amended to limit the authorization to seek injunctive relief to the County Attorney.
Staff recommendation:
Amend lines 97-98 as follows:
ill
The County Attorney
[[Qr
any affected
.tm!1Y]]
may file an action in
iurisdiction to enjoin repeated violations of the Section.
~
court with
7.
Riemer Amendments.
Councilmember Riemer may introduce an amendment to provide that the exemption for
materials used to package raw, uncooked, or butchered meat, fish, poultry, or seafood for off­
premises consumption applies to the Bill's requirement for the use of compostable or recyclable
disposable food service ware (©117). The Bill, as drafted, exempts these materials from the ban
on expanded polystyrene food service products. This amendment would make the Bill internally
consistent, as it is inconsistent to allow a food service business to use an expanded polystyrene
product for a specific purpose in one section, and then effectively prohibit such use for the same
purpose in another section.
Councilmember Riemer may also introduce an amendment to change the effective date
(lines 106-107 at ©5) of the requirement that a County agency, department, contractor or lessee
use recyclable or compostable disposable food service ware from 90 days after the Act becomes
law to January 1, 2016. This amendment is at ©118.
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This packet contains:
Bi1141-14
Legislative Request Report
Resolution No. 17-522
Councilmember Riemer Memo
House of Representatives Letter
List showing applicability to municipalities
Testimony
Dan Locke
Conservation Montgomery
Sierra Club
League of Women Voters
Surfrider Foundation
Alice Ferguson Foundation
Rock Creek Conservancy
Neighbors ofthe Northwest Branch
Anacostia Watershed Society
Sugarloaf Citizens' Association
Molly Hauck
Margot Bloch
Anna Brookes
Leo Blain
Nadine Bloch
Institute for Local Self Reliance
Trash Free Maryland
Jennifer Chambers
Restaurant Association of Maryland
Dart Container Corporation
Environmental Resources Planning, LLC
Maryland Retailers Association
Lorenzo Bellamy, Alexander and Cleaver
American Chemistry Council
San Francisco Vendor List
San Jose Alternative Product List
Challenges to Recycling Polystyrene Foam, Portland, ME
Los Angeles County DPW Memo (partial) -
09/2112010
City of San Jose Memo (partial) -
01103/2012
Comprehensive Solid Waste Plan Table 5.1
Fiscal and Economic Impact statement
OLO FEIS Review
San Jose Econ. Impact Analysis Intro and Findings
Riemer Amendment
Riemer Amendment 2
F:\LAw\BILLS\l441 Disposable Food Service Products\T&E Memo.Doc
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Bill No.
41-14
Concerning: Solid Waste ITrash) - Food
Service Products -
Packaging
Materials - Requirements
Revised: September 4. 2014 Draft No.
§
Introduced:
September 9. 2014
Expires:
March 9, 2016
Enacted: _ _ _ _ _
~
_ _ __
Executive: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Effective: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Sunset Date: --'-'-No=n=e:...-_ _ _ __
Ch. _ _, Laws of Mont. Co. _ __
COUNTY COUNCIL
FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND
By: Councilmember Riemer and Council Vice President Leventhal
AN
ACT to:
(l)
prohibit the use of certain expanded polystyrene food service products by food service
businesses;
(2) require the use of compostable or recyclable food service ware by the County, County
contractors or lessees, and food service businesses;
(3) prohibit the sale of certain expanded polystyrene food service products and polystyrene
loose fill packaging;
(4) provide for enforcement; and
(5) generally amend County law regarding environmentally acceptable food semce
products and packaging materials.
By adding
Montgomery County Code
Chapter 48, Solid Waste (Trash)
Article VI, Disposable Food Service Products and Packaging Materials
Sections 48-52, 48-53, 48-54, 48-55,48-56,48-57, and 48-58
Boldface
Underlining
[Single boldface brackets]
Double underlining
[[Double boldface brackets]]
* * *
Heading or defined term.
Added to existing law
by
original
bill.
Deletedfrom existing law
by
original
bill.
Added
by
amendment.
Deletedfrom existing law or the
bill by
amendment.
Existing law unaffected
by bill.
The County Council for Montgomery County, Maryland approves the following Act:
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BILL
No.
41-14
1
Sec.
1.
Article VI (Sections 48-52, 48-53, 48-54, 48-55, 48-56, 48-57, and
48-58) of Chapter 48 is added as follows:
ARTICLE VI. Disposable Food Service Products and Packaging Materials.
48-52. Definitions.
2
3
4
5
6
In this Article, the following terms have the meanings indicated:
ASTM standard
means the American Society for Testing and Materials
7
8
(ASTM) International Standards D6400 or D6868 for biodegradable and
compostable plastics.
ASTM standard bioplastic
means!! plastic like product that meets the ASTM
9
10
standard.
Compostable
means material that will break down into, or otherwise become
11
12
13
14
part
Qb
usable compost
~
soil-conditioning material, mulch) in!! safe and
timely manner in an appropriate composting program or facility, or in !! home
compost pile or device. Compostable disposable food service ware includes
ASTM standard bioplastics that are clearly labeled, preferably with !! color
symbol, such that any compost collector and processor can easily distinguish
the compostable ASTM standard bioplastic from non-ASTM standard plastic.
Disposable fOod service ware
means containers, bowls, plates, trays, cartons,
15
16
17
18
19
20
cups, lids, straws, forks, spoons, knives, napkins, and other items that are
designed for one-time use for beverages, prepared food, or leftovers from
meals prepared
Qy
!! food service business. The term "disposable food service
ware" does not include items composed entirely of aluminum.
Expanded polystyrene
means blown polystyrene and expanded and extruded
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
foams that are thermoplastic petrochemical materials utilizing !! styrene
monomer and processed
Qy
!! number of techniques, including fusion of
polymer spheres (expandable bead polystyrene), injection molding, foam
molding, and extrusion-blow molding (extruded foam polystyrene).
@
f:~aw\bills\1441
disposable food service productslbiUS.doc
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BILL
No. 41-14
28
Expanded polystyrene fOod service products
means food containers, plates, hot
and cold beverage cups, meat and vegetable trays,
~
29
30
cartons, and other
products made of expanded polystyrene and used for selling, providing, or
serving food that are:
31
32
33
34
35
ill
ill
intended
Qy
the manufacturer to be used once for eating or
drinking; or
generally recognized
Qy
the public as items to be discarded after
36
37
38
Food service business
means
£!
full-service restaurant, limited-service
restaurant, fast food restaurant, cafe, delicatessen, coffee shop, supermarket,
grocery store, vending truck or cart, food truck, business or institutional
cafeteria, including those operated
Qy
or on behalf of County departments and
agencies, and other business selling or providing food
within
the County for
consumption on or off the premises.
Polystyrene loosefJJ1packamng
means
£!
void-filling packaging product made
of expanded polystyrene that is used as packaging fill. Polystyrene loose fill
packaging is commonly referred to as packing peanuts.
Recyclable
means material that can be sorted, cleansed, and reconstituted in
£!
cost-effective manner using recycling collection programs provided in the
County for the purpose of using the altered form in the manufacture of
£!
new
product.
Recycling does not include burning, incinerating, converting or
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
otherwise thermally destroying solid waste.
48-53. Prohibition on
~
of expanded polystyrene food service products.
ill
A food service business must not sell or provide food in expanded
polystyrene food service products, regardless of where the food will be
consumed.
®
Subsection (g) does not
.rumlY
to:
o
f:\Iawlbills\1441 disposable food service products\billS.doc
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BILL No. 41-14
55
56
ill
food or beverages that were filled and sealed in expanded
polystyrene containers outside of the County before
service business received them; or
§:
food
57
58
59
ill
materials used to package raw, uncooked. or butchered meat, fish,
poultry, or seafood for off- premises consumption.
60
61
48-54. Compostable
Q!
recyclable disposable food service ware required.
ill
A County facility, agency, or department using disposable food service
ware must use compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware
unless the Executive determines that there is
no
suitable affordable
compostable or recyclable product available in accordance with Section
48-57.
62
63
64
65
66
67
(hl
A County contractor or lessee using disposable food service ware must
use compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware unless the
Executive determines that there is
no
suitable affordable compostable or
recyclable product available in accordance with Section 48-57.
68
69
70
71
(!i)
A food service business selling or providing food or beverages for
consumption
on
or off premises in disposable food service ware must
use compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware; provided,
that this subsection does not
72
73
74
mmlY
to
prepackaged food or beverages
that were filled and sealed outside of the County before
§:
food service
business received them.
48-55. Recyclable and compostable food service
l!lli
list.
75
76
77
78
79
80
81
No later than 180 days after the effective date of this Act, the Executive must
publish
§:
list of vendors offering affordable compostable or recyclable disposable
food service ware J2roducts. The Executive must review and uJ2date this list annually
for at least
~
years after it is first published.
48-56. Prohibition on sale.
@
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BILL No. 41-14
82
83
84
A person must not sell or offer for sale in the County:
.@)
expanded polystyrene food service products; or
polystyrene loose fill packaging.
®
85
86
87
48-57. Exemptions.
If the Executive determines that there is no available affordable compostable
or recyclable alternative to
~
disposable food service ware item, this item must be
88
89
90
91
92
93
94
95
listed on an exemption list and made available to the public. Sections 48-53 and 48­
54 do not
m;m.ly
to
~
disposable food service ware item on the exemption list or for
the first Q months after an item is removed from the list. The Executive must review
and update the exemption list annually to determine whether any items should be
removed because an affordable compostable or recyclable alternative has become
available.
48-58. Enforcement.
.@)
Any violation of this Article is
~
class B civil violation. Each day
~
96
97
98
99
100
101
102
103
violation exists is
~
separate offense.
@
The County Attorney or any affected
Pm1Y
may file an action in
~
court
with jurisdiction to enjoin repeated violations ofthe Section.
Sec. 2. Effective date.
fill
The prohibition on use of expanded polystyrene food service products
contained in Section 48-53 and the prohibition on the sale of expanded
polystyrene food service products and polystyrene loose fill packaging
contained in Section 48-56 take effect on January
L
2016.
104
105
®
The requirement for
~
County facility, agency, department, contractor,
or lessee to use compostable or recyclable disposable food service ware
established
Qy
Subsections 48-54
.@)
and
@
takes effect 90 days after
this Act becomes law. Notwithstanding any other provision,
~
106
107
108
County
facility, agency, department, contractor, or lessee may use disposable
o
t\lawlbillsl1441 disposable food service productslbill5.doc
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BILL
No. 41-14
109
110
111
food service ware already purchased as of the effective date of this Act
until the supplies are exhausted or until January
..L.
2017,
whichever is
earlier, including disposable food service ware that the County facility,
agency. department, contractor or lessee is obligated to purchase under
any contracts in force on the effective date of this Act.
112
113
114
115
ill
The requirement to use compostable or recyclable disposable food
service ware established by Subsection 48-54(c) takes effect on January
116
..L.
2017.
Approved:
117
118
Craig
L.
Rice, President, County Council
119
Date
Approved:
120
Isiah Leggett, County Executive
Date
121
122
This is a correct copy o/Council action.
Linda M. Lauer, Clerk ofthe Council
Date
®
f:llawlbills\1441 disposable
food
service producls\bill5.doc
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LEGISLA'"IVE REQUEST REPORT
Bill 41-14
Solid Waste (Trash)
-
Food Service Products
-
Packaging Materials
-
Requirements
DESCRIPTION:
This bill would
• Prohibit the use of certain polystyrene foam food service products
by food service businesses beginning on January 1,2016.
• Prohibit the sale of foam loose fill packaging (packing peanuts) and
bulk foam food service products (i.e., bulk foam cups and plates)
beginning on January 1,2016.
• Require the use of compostable or recyclable food service products
by the County, and County Contractors and lessees 90 days after the
Act becomes law, and by food service businesses beginning on
January 1, 2017.
Polystyrene foam is a pervasive source of litter, both on land and in
marine environments, and has been classified as "reasonably
anticipated to be a human carcinogen" by the
u.s.
Department of
Health and Human Services.
To reduce the negative environmental and human health effects of
polystyrene foam by reducing its use in the County.
Department of Environmental Protection
To be requested.
To be requested.
To be requested.
To be researched.
Josh Hamlin, Legislative Attorney
To be researched.
PROBLEM:
GOALS AND
OBJECTIVES:
COORDINATION:
FISCAL IMPACT:
ECONOMIC
IMPACT:
EVALUATION:
EXPERIENCE
ELSEWHERE:
SOURCE OF
INFORMATION:
APPLICATION
WITHIN
MUNICIPALITIES:
PENALTIES:
Civil penalties and injunctive relief.
f:\law\bills\1441 disposable food service products\Jrr.doc
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Resolution No.: 17-522
Introduced:
July 17, 2012
Adopted:
July 31, 2012
~.-;....;~-::-::----
COUNTY COUNCIL
FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND
By: Councilmember Leventhal
SUBJECT:
Elimination ofthe
Use
of Polystyrene Plates, Cups. and other Foodware in
County Government Cafeterias
Background
1.
Polystyrene is a petroleum-derived plastic-like material used for packaging. The foam
fonn, known as expanded polystyrene (EPS). is commonly used to make disposable
plates, cups, bowls and other items.
Approximately 1 million tons of polystyrene plates, cups, and other foodware are
disposed of in the United States every year.
While potentially recyclable as a #6 plastic, polystyrene is not commonly recycled
because of food contamination concerns and because polystyrene's high volwne to
weight ratio complicates transport ofthe material. The Environmental Protection Agency
estimates that less than one percent of all polystyrene produced in the United States is
recycled.
Montgomery County's Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Solid
Waste, does not recycle polystyrene because of the lack of stable regional markets for
the
product and because of the complications noted in Paragraph 3.
Environmentally friendly alternatives to the use of polystyrene are available, such as:
reusable .equipment (trays, cups, and silverware) and the use of paper and other products
made from recycled content and which are also compostable, biodegradable andlor
recyclable.
County residents, businesses, and government all need to
be
good stewards of the
environment. County Government should lead by example with environmental initiatives
to affinn the County's commitment to reduce its environmental footprint and to show that
viable environmentally-friendly options are available and should
be
pursued whenever
possible.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
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Page 2
7.
Resolution No.: 17-522
The County's Department of General Services has successfully worked with its food
service contractors to eliminate the use of polystyrene at its' cafeteria sites. These sites
are now using recycled paper products for food containers and plates and using clear
plastic products for certain wet food items.
Action
The County Council for Montgomery County Maryland approves the following
resolution:
The Council supports the elimination of polystyrene foodware in County
Government cafeterias and encourages other public and private food service facilities to
also consider the elimination ofthe use ofpolystyrene foodware.
This is a correct copy of Council action.
Lmda M. Lauer, Clerk of the Council
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MONTGOMERY COUNTY COUNCil
Rockville, Maryland
Councilmember Hans Riemer
At large
MEMORANDUM
To:
From:
Re:
Date:
Councilmembers
Council member Hans Riemer
Banning Expanded Polystyrene in Montgomery County
September
2, 2014
Colleagues, on September 9, I am introducing a bill that that would ban the use and sale of
certain forms of expanded polystyrene (sometimes called IIStyrofoam," although Styrofoam is
just one brand of expanded foam) in the County.
I
ask for your co-sponsorship and support.
With this ban, Montgomery County would join a growing list of other communities that have
taken action to ban expanded polystyrene, including Washington DC, San Francisco, Seattle, and
New York City.
My bill closely tracks legislation passed in Washington, DC, and signed by Mayor Gray in July,
2014.
Our implementation timeline would match Washington's, allowing for a smoother
regional effort to raise awareness as well as helping to strengthen the local market for
alternative products.
Specifically, the bill includes the following key provisions:
• Prohibits the use of foam food service products by food service businesses beginning on
January
1, 2016.
• Prohibits the sale of foam loose fill packaging (packing peanuts) and bulk foam food
service products (bulk foam cups and plates) beginning on January
1, 2016.
• Requires the use of compostable or recyclable food service products by the County,
County Contractors, and food service businesses beginning on January
1, 2017.
This is important because foam, which is a petroleum-based plastiC, is a meaningful share of the
litter and pollution found in our watersheds. Over time, discarded foam breaks down into small
pieces, but it does not completely dissolve and it is very hard to clean up. When it is ingested by
marine life, it causes harm. For human health, the National Research Council has recently
"upheld the listing of styrene as 'reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen.",l
Fortunately, there are reasonable alternatives to expanded foam.
1
http://www8.nationalacademies.orgJonpinews/newsitem.aspx?RecordID=18725
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FRED UPTON, MICHIGAN
CHAIRMAN
HENRY A. WAXMAN. CALIFORNIA
RANKING MEMBER
ONE HUNDRED THIRTEENTH CONGRESS
((ongrt5S of
tbe
~nittb
$tates
lJoufSc of li\eprefSentatibefS
COMMlTTEE ON ENERGY AND COIVlMERCE
2125
RAYBURN HOUSE OFFICE BUILDING
WASHINGTON,
DC 20515-6115
Majority (202) 225--2927
Minority (202) 225--3641
September 11, 2014
The Honorable John
A.
Boehner
Speaker of the House
U.S. House of Representatives
H-232 The Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
Majority Leader
U.S. House ofRepresentatives
H-329 The Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515
The Horiorable Candice S. Miller
Chairman
Committee on House Administration
1309 Longworth. House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515
Dear Speaker Boehner, Majority Leader McCarthy, and Chairman Miller:
Since our last letter in 2011, we remain concerned about the potential health and
environmental effects ofyour current choice to use polystyrene foam products
in
the House of
Representatives cafeterias. Two recent developments illustrate the hazards posed by these
materials and highlight that action to remove them from our cafeterias is long overdue. On July
28, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) released its Review of the Styrene Assessment in
the National Toxicology Programs 12th Report on Carcinogens, strongly supporting the listing of
styrene as reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen. That same week, Washington, D.C.,
joined the growing list of over 100 cities that have chosen to ban polystyrene products for health
and environmental reasons. It is past time for Congress to do the same.
The NAS report notes that "many people
in
the United States are exposed" to styrene
through "food (from migration ofstyrene from polymer packaging materials), cigarette smoke,
II
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The Honorable John
A.
Boehner
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
The Honorable Candice S. Miller
September 11, 2014
Page 2
vehicle exhaust, and other forms of combustion and incineration of styrene polymers."
1
The
NAS report also found occupational exposures from the production of styrene. The House of
Representatives' continued use ofpolystyrene containers perpetuates these exposures for those
who eat in our cafeterias, those who manufacture the containers we use, and those who live in
the areas where our waste is incinerated.
These exposures pose potential health risks. Studies cited by the National Toxicology
Program and the NAS found lymphohematopoietic, pancreatic, and esophageal cancers in people
with occupational exposures to styrene.! Animal studies also showed increased incidence of
cancer from both ingestion and inhalation of styrene, and mechanistic analyses "provided
convincing evidence that genotoxicity is observed in cells from humans who were exposed to
styrene."J Based on those studies, the NAS committee concluded that "compelling evidence
exists to support a listing of styrene as, at a minimum,
reasonably anticipated to be a human
carcinogen.'>4
Our use ofthese dangerous products also hanns the waterways in Washington, D.C..
Trash is a significant problem for the health of the Anacostia River, which is why the-river has
had in place a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) for trash since 2010.
5
According to tracking
by the Anacostia Watershed Society, foam makes up about 30% of trash in the river.
6
The city is
taking action to reduce polystyrene pollution in the watershed by banning the use of polystyrene
food containers and requiring the use of compostable or recyclable food service products.
Congress shares responsibility for pollution in Washington and we should take the same action.
For more than three years, House members and staff, as well as constituents and visitors
to the Hill who eat in our cafeterias, have needlessly been exposed to this dangerous chemical.
Research Council ofthe National Academies,
Review ofthe Styrene
Assessment in the National Toxicology Program 12th Report on Carcinogens
(July 28,2014)
(online at www.nap.edulcatalog.php?record_id=18725).
1
National
2
[d.
at 7.
Ed.
at 13. [Italicized in original]
3
Ed.
4
Department of the Environment and District of Columbia Department of the
Environment - Natural Resources Administration,
Total Maximum Daily Loads ofTrash for the
Anacostia River Watershed. Montgomery and Prince George's Counties, Maryland and the
District ofColumbia
(Sept. 21, 2010) (online at
www
.green.dc.gov/sitesfdefaultlfiles/dc/sites/ddoelpublicationlattachmentslFinal_Anacostia_Tra
sh_TMDL.pdf).
Society,
Nash Rush Trash Trap Project
(online ate
www.anacostiaws.orglprogramslstewardshlp/monitoringlnash-run-trash-trap).
6
Anacostia Watershed
5
Maryland
J2
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The Honorable John A. Boehner
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
The Honorable Candice S. Miller
September
n,
2014
Page 3
We have also been contributing to the problem of litter in the District of Columbia. We hope
you
will
reconsider the use of polystyrene foam in our cafeterias.
Sincerely,
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The Honorable John
A.
Boehner
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
The
Honorable Candice S. Miller
September 11, 2014
Page 4
A-.,t
U
~
WfJ~
a...11~
1.lr~.
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The Honorable John
A.
Boehner
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
The Honorable Candice S. Miller
September 11,2014
PageS
1&#~¥
~?IJL
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The Honorable John A Boehner
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
The Honorable Candice
S. Miller
September II, 2014
Page 6
~.
W(»3l;;t
~~
~dfl4&ur'
LM
i
t
iRv
~
~~ C\\(J#~~
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The Honorable John
A.
Boelmer
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
The Honorable Candice S. Miller
September
11,
2014
Page 7
~~~~
~~
11
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APPLICABILITY OF CHAPTER 48 - SOLID WASTE (TRASH) TO MUNICIPALITIES
Source: Montgomery County Code, Appendix F.
County Laws Applicable to Municipalities
Town of Barnesville
Town of Brookville
Chevy Chase Village
Chevy Chase View
Chevy Chase Sec. 3
Town of Chevy Chase
Chevy Chase Sec. 5
City of Gaithersburg
Town of Garrett Park
Town of Glen Echo
Town of Kensington
Town of laytonsville
Village of Martin's Addition
Village of North Chevy Chase
Town of Poolesville
City of Rockville
Town of Somerset
City of Takoma Park
Town of Washington Grove
no
yes
no
yes
no
yes
yes
no
no
no
yes
yes
no
yes
yes
no
no
yes
no
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\
Testimony on Behalf of County Executive Isiah Leggett on
Bill 41-14, Solid Waste
(Trash) ­
Food Service Products - Packaging Requirements
October 14,2014
Good evening President Rice and Members of the County Council. I am Dan Locke,
Chief, Division of Solid Waste Services in the Department of Environmental Protection and I am
here to testify on behalf of County Executive Isiah Leggett in support of Bill 41-14. The Bill
would amend the County Code governing certain packaging and food service ware used by food
service businesses in the County.
The purpose of this bill is to reduce litter and pollution found in our watersheds by
requiring food service businesses (including County Departments and Agencies) to stop using
polystyrene products and eventually requiring them all to use compostable or recyclable food
service ware. The bill also prohibits the sale and use of polystyrene loose fill packaging. The Bill
requires the Executive to establish, and update annually, a list of vendors offering affordable and
compostable disposable food service ware products.
Enforcement of Bill 41-14 will be accomplished with current Executive Branch Staff, on
a complaint driven basis, with the Department of Environmental Protection taking the lead.
Lastly, Bill 41-14 is a very good compliment to ongoing efforts to reduce litter in our
waterway as required by our current MS4 permit. We look forward to the positive impact this
Bill will have on waterways within the County.
Thank you for the opportunity to testify.
I
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~
Conservation
Montgomery
Statement on Council
Bill 41-14
Bill
41-14,
Solid Waste (Trash)
-
Food Service Products Packaging Materials
October
14/ 2014
Position: Favorable
Delivered
by
caren Madsen, Chair, Board of Directors
Conservation Montgomery supports Bill
41·14
and we thank COLincilmembers Riemer,
Leventhal and Eirich for leading the way on this legislation.
We support this bill because it aligns with our mission to help improve the quality of life for
Montgomery County residents while protecting and conserving the county's natural resources. Too
often, however, we see our beautiful parks, streams/ creeks and roadways littered with polystyrene
food containers which this bill seeks to ban. Working with teenagers who are earning SSL hours,
I've picked up more than my fair share of this awful stuff in county parks and out of the Northwest
Branch of the Anacostia River.
We assume this bill will have unanimous passage by this Council for all of the reasons spelled
out in the legislative packet drafted by your staff. However, I'd like to encourage you to consider an
extra step. No bill will ever guide consumers toward behavior that discourages litter.
We encourage you to work with the Executive branch to develop an effective countywide
public education campaign to reduce litter that will reach all population segments of the county.
Those of us who are baby boomers still remember the Keep America Beautiful campaign launched in
the
19605
featuring the actor Iron Eyes Cody - he's typically remembered as the "crying Indian.'1
As
an aside, we found out years later that Iron Eyes was actually
100%
Italian. But the message he
helped deliver remains ingrained in our memory. Without effective public education in our
communities/ no bill will keep Montgomery clean.
On a final note, I want to applaud the county employees who operate the solid waste
recycling facility in Shady Grove. That facility is impressive and is one of the best services county
taxpayers have at their disposal. I hope the Council will always keep that service fully funded.
Thank you.
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SIERRA
CLUB
FOUNDED 1892
Montgomery County Group
Montgomery County Council Hearing
Bill 41-14, Solid Waste (Trash) - Food Service Products - Packaging Materials­
.
Requirements
October 14, 2014
Good evening. I am arian Ditzler, a resident of Silver Spring, and am here speaking on behalf of
the Sierra Club of Montgomery County and its 5000 members in this county. I currently serve
on the Sierra Club Executive Committees for our county and for the state chapter.
Our county group strongly supports Bill 41-14 that would restrict the sale and use of expanded
polystyrene in food service products and loose fill packaging in Montgomery C?>unty.
Expanded polystyrene is one of the most ubiquitous examples of unnecessary, single use,
throwaway packaging in our country, and it is having a profoundly negative effect on our
environment and health.
It is made from petroleum, a non-renewCilble, heavily polluting commodity. Polystyrene
manufacturing requires enormous energy consumption and excessive greenhouse gas
emissions. In addition to polluting the air, polystyrene manufacturing creates large amounts of"
liquid and solid waste. In fact, an EPA report on solid waste named the polystyrene
manufacturing process as the fifth largest creator of hazardous waste in the U.S.
Expanded polystyrene is designed to be used for relatively short periods, but because it is not
biodegradable, it may take hundreds of years to deteriorate in our environment and landfills. .
Polystyrene cannot easily be recycled, and is not accepted for recycling in our county.
.
Because it is very light weight,polystyrene is easily blown into our streets, gutters and'storm
drains, even when properly disposed o[ With its buoyancy, it easily reaches our waterways and
eventually our oceans worldwide. Polystyrene food packaging contributes disproportionately to
oceanic plastic pollution, with more than 80 percent of this pollution coming from urban litter.'
A local example of the pervasive presence of polystyrene was demonstrated when a trash trap
along Nash Run in Washington, DC, which flows into the Anacostia River, revealed 22 percent
of the average trash volume collected by the trap was polystyrene foam. This was according to
a 2010 report by the Anacostia Watershed Society fOr theOC Department of the Environment.
Because polystyrene is very brittle, it can easily break into small pieces which makes clean up
quite diffiCult, if not impossible. When in small pieces floating in our waterways and oceans,
polystyrene is consumed by marine life (including seabirds) because it appears to be food. It
actually can cause choking or starvation when ingested, and the toxic chemicals it contains
surely aren't good for the health of rnarine life either.
2../
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Polystyrene contains styrene and benzene, suspected carcinogens and neurotoxins that are
hazardous to humans. They can leach
out
into the food and drink that polystyrene pa<;:kaging
cpntains, especially when heated in a microwave. ,
'
For all these reasons, more than'100cities in the US and Canada (including Washington, DC,
New York: City, Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland), as well as cities in
Europe and Asia, have banned, polystyrene food packaging.
".
Since Bill 41-14 closely tracks legislation already passed in Washington, DC, Montgomery
County courd join
:with
its neighboring jurisdiction in an effort to raise public awareness
of
the
problems with expanded polystyrene products and why other food service ware is preferable.
Bill 41-14 also would require that compostable or recyclable food service ware be used by the
county, its contractors or lessees and'food service businesses. ,That also makes a lot of sense,. '
, Such a requirement likely would increase the uSe
of
compostable materials in
the
county, which
would
be
a positive development for the recycling movement. If our county were to significantly
expand its small, model project col/ecting food waste for recycling (which we would'advocate),
the addition of compostable food service'ware to food waste would increase
the
total volume
that
could
be
c01Iected for composting. This would be another important step forward in, ' "
expanding green ecOnomic development opportunities and building a more sustainable
Montgomery County.
After all, food is the largest component
of
waste (21%) going into landfills and incineration,
according to
the
EPA Food waste (and compostable foOd service ware) possibly could
be
added to the yard trim that already is conected
~nd
composted by the county to create more soil
'
,
supplement for resale.
Let me note before closing that it is unfortunate that. many food service businesses will
be
forced to change the containers they use for food they sell
if
this bill passes. However, change
happens in advanced societies
~hen
it turns oLit there are real piQblems with the way
,
something was done. ,
For example, asbestos Was widely used in industry and in home products like flooring, '
insulation, siding, shingles and some appliances that heat up_ However. when
it
was
determined asbestos' caused real problems, society decided
it
was prudent to use alternatiVes.
That's what needs to happen now that the many problems with polystyrene have been
'
establish~
..
To summarize, Sierra Club Montgomery CoUnty heartily endorses. Bill 41:-14.
We commend Council 'Member Reimer for introducing the bill, and thank Council Members
Leventhal and Eirich
..
. .
for supporting
it.
.
,
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THE LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS
ofMontgomery County, MD, Inc.
Statement on Bill No.
41-14
Montgomery County Council
October
14, 2014
Dear Council President and other Council Members:
Please note the following remarks concerning Bill
41-14,
Solid Waste (Trash) Food Service
Products Packaging Materials -Requirements,
which the League of Women Voters of
Montgomery County strongly supports.
For many, many years the League of Women Voters nationally has emphasized REDUCE,
REUSE, RECYCLE as the recommended order of actions for handling materials. The
problem that the county council is being asked to address now is that the only one of these
that can be safely applied
to
polystyrene materials is
"reduce",
Styrene materials cannot be routinely reused; nor can they be recycled. Disposal in a
landfill does not work because they do not degrade completely and their tiny-particles
can harm the organisms that take them in. Disposal through incineration adds more
greenhouse gases (mostly carbon dioxide) to the atmosphere.
On behalf of the League, I note that we are aware of and appreciate that once this bill
passes, the county will track how well and how rapidly the replacement compostable
materials actually compost.
Meanwhile
we
urge you to pass Bill No.
41-14
as soon as possible to assist in getting the
deleterious polystyrene materials out of the county's waste stream.
Yours truly,
Linna Barnes, President
League of Women Voters ofMontgomery County, Maryland. Inc., 12216 Parklawn Dr., Suite 10
1,
Rockville,:MD 20852
'"
Fax: 301-984-9586
'"
Email:
lwvmc@erols.com '" Web: mont.1wvmd.org
.2.3
Tel.: 301-984-9585
OVl2r
go
Years of
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SURFRIDER
~"0TeP.
FOUNDATION
~
5
Montgomery County Council, October 14, 2014 Hearing
Testimony IN SUPPORT of Bill 41-14 {the "Bill"}
Michael Caruso
D.C. Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation
http://dc.surfrider.org/ -- chair@dc.surfrider.org
I am submitting this testimony on behalf of the D.C. Chapter (the "D.C. Chapter") of the Surfrider
Foundation.
(I
will also be a Montgomery County resident as of this Friday.)
The D.C. Chapter is speaking here in
support
of Bill 41-14.
The Surfrider Foundation is a 501 (c}(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the protection and
enjoyment of oceans, waves, beaches, and rivers. The D.C. Chapter engages almost 100
members in Montgomery County and 400 members in the greater Washington D.C. metro area
to both protect and enjoy the Anacostia, Potomac, and all our local rivers and waters. Our
chapter members access the Anacostia and Potomac Rivers, and its tributaries, on stand-up
paddleboards, kayaks, and even by swimming. The chapter holds several cleanups each year,
and we have held several cleanups in Montgomery County over the past few years, where we
collect trash along, and from, the Anacostia, Potomac, and its tributaries here in Montgomery
County. We find expanded polystyrene foam (EPS) at every cleanup, and it represents a
substantial portion of the trash we collect.
As you may know, EPS neither biodegrades
1
nor does Montgomery County recycle the material.
In fact, EPS, and plastic more generally, is a global problem that affects all of the world's
oceans. Plastics, which include EPS, are one of the most common types of marine litter
worldwide.
2
Eliminating the source of this pollutant upstream - in Montgomery County -- will
help both our local and global waterways.
Similar bans are already in place in several parts of the country, including, as you know, D.C.,
and in Berkeley, California, Marin County, California, Freeport, Maine, Amherst, Massachusetts,
Portland, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington. The Surfrider Foundation maintains a list of
municipalities that have existing EPS bans. (A link to that list is available here:
http://www.surfrider.org/pages/polystyrene-ordinances.)
Further, our Montgomery County members support this bill - many of you received our chapter's
action alert that asked residents to contact their council members about this bill.
We ask that the Montgomery County Council pass Bill 41-14, and help Montgomery County fight
this source of non-biodegradable trash from reaching our rivers and waterways, which our
members regularly use and enjoy as residents of Montgomery County.
Thank you for your consideration.
1
2
See: http://www,beachapedia.orq/Polystyrene
See:
htt~l:lfwww.beachapedia.orq/Rise
Above Plastics Facts and Figures
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1~=s.,.,,--~'.:?U501\
~u
Clean Land, Safe Water, Healthy LIves
.
1
POUI\JaflOI\
To the Montgomery County Council
Remarks of Clara Elias, Program Manager, Alice Ferguson Foundation
Regarding Bill 41·14, Solid Waste (frash) Food Service Products - Packaging Materials­
Requirements
Tuesday, October 14,2014
.'\t;.
........
My name is C1a:ra Elias and I am here representing the Alice
Ferguson Foundation. Thank you for conducting this important
public hearing conceming Bill 41-14, Food Service Products
Packaging Material Requirements. I am here today in support of a
Polystyrene ban.
The Alice Ferguson Foundation is an environmental education
nonprofit based in Maryland. We have been coordinating the
Potomac River Watershed Cleanup with our partners in April for
the past 26 years.
This
past April over nearly 15,000 volunteers
worked to pull 576,000 pounds of trash from Maryland, Virginja,
Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia. Much
of the trash that was picked up was polystyrene, also known as
Styrofoam.
In
fact, the 2008
Anacostia River Trash Reduction Plan
found that Styrofoam containers and products accounted for 17%
of floatable trash pollution and nearly 10% of land based litter
found within the Anacostia River Watershed These Styrofoam
products do not biodegrade, instead they accumulate degrading
the quality of our environment and our communities. Styrofoam
products also break into smaller pieces that are both difficult to
remove by our cleanup volunteers, but also commonly mistaken
for food by wildlife. Once ingested polystyrene can lead to
starvation in wildlife and become incorporated into the food
chain where it can disrupt
physiol~gical
processes as styrene, a
component of StyrofoaIIl, is a recognized neurotoncant.
While cleanups are important for keeping the Potomac Watershed
free of plastic bags and other litter, we also need to address the
source of
this
pollution. One way we can do
this
is with policies,
such as a polystyrene ban, that are effective at
changing
behavior
and reducing litter. For instance, since bag fees were implemented
in the District of Columbia and Montgomery County our Cleanup
Pofy.rtJre1ll
ciam.rhells,
C1Ij:Js,
and
othe,.
packaging are f"e!!,larfy
littered.
StJrofoam
litter
in our .rtreet.r
and
COlllmtmitie.r
makes
its
wt9
dotvn.rtream
intrJ our local
wt:Iter1ll(!}.r where
it
J1t9.r
in
the
environment.
200 1 Bryan Point Road
Accokeek. Maryland
20607
Phone 301.292.5665
Fax 301.292.1070
ferqusonfoundation.or
1255 23
rd
SlTeet, NW,
Suite
275
Washington,
DC 20036
Phone 202.973.8203
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volunteers have recorded over 50% less plastic bags at sites within these jurisdictions. A polystyrene
ban has the same potential to drastically reduce the level of trash pollution in the District.
A
switch to compostable and recyclable alternatives would be a
win
for the environment, and
doesn't need to be difficult.
In
a 2013 survey we did of 33 food trucks in DC, we found that roughly
40% were already
using
compostable materials, such as paper plates and waxed paper boats, with a
si.milat: amount relying on expanded polystyrene (Styrofoam). For this reason we believe it
w:i11
be
easier
than
one may
think
for businesses to make the switch, especially
if
businesses are provided
with a clear and comprehensive list of alternatiVes. The Alice Ferguson Foundation hopes that the
council
will
vote in favor of a polystyrene ban and
in
favor of trash free waterways in Montgomery
County.
Thank
you.
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Bill 41-14-SUPPORT
TESTIM:ONY OF MATTHEW FlEISCHER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,
ROCK CREEK CONSERVANCY
At the Public Hearing on Bill No. 41-14
Ban of Polystyrene Food Service Ware
Montgomery County Council
October 14,2014
Rock Creek. Conservancy (RCC) is a nonprofit organization founded in 2005 to
protect and restore Rock Creek and its waterways, parks, and lands. RCC has
mobilized thousands of volunteers to protect Rock Creek's watershed and its 20 major
tributaries. Our projects have included tree planting, stonn
drain
marking, invasive
plant removal, rain garden installations, and trash cleanups.
Rock Creek is the second largest watershed in Montgomery County, spanning
over 168 miles of waterways from its northemmost tributaries near Laytonsville, MD
to its outlet into the Potomac River across from Roosevelt Island in DC. The
watershed includes Matthew Henson State Park, Rock Creek Regional Park, Rock
Creek Stream Valley Park, Rockville's Civic Center Park, and over 40 local parks.
Given Rock Creek's expanse through some of the most densely commercial areas in
Montgomery County, RCC supports the passage of Bill 41-14 to eljminate the use of
expanded polystyrene in food service and packaging facilities.
Scientific evidence demonstrates that polystyrene is a health threat to humans
and wildlife, polluting water sources, infiltrating habitats and ecosystems, and being
labeled as "reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen" by the US Department
of Health and Human Services. Rock Creek Conservancy has done its part to minimize
this threat by reducing the presence of trash, including polystyrene, in Rock Creek
parks and waterways.
Over the past three years!> volunteers spent over 25,500 hours pulling trash from
streams and woodlands at 75 different locations that border the creek through our
annual Rock Creek. Extreme Cleanup and other cleanup events.
Altogether~
26.5 tons
of loose trash and 6618 bags of trash were collected. Despite the efficacy of
Montgomery County's plastic bag
tax,
reducing the number of plastic bags collected in
Montgomery County trash cleanups from well over 7,000 in 2011
to
2,360 in 2014,
other trash continues to pollute Rock Creek.
1
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Bill 41-14--SUPPORT
Based on regional watershed cleanup records, we know that as much as three
quarters of trash removed from waterways
is
food-related, with 25-40% in the form of
expanded polystyrene. Polystyrene enters Rock Creek and its waterways as food ware
used at picnics, barbeques and other outdoor eating activities held in Rock Creek or at
nearby establishments. Polystyrene products also enter Rock Creek's waterways as
litter that has been dropped, thrown from cars, blown from trashcans or trucks, and
found in illegal dumpsites. This litter washes into storm drain
systems
from
commercial areas in Bethesda, Rockville, Silver Spring, Wheaton, and a number of
strip developments.
As they make their way through storm drains into nearby creeks, polystyrene
products break up into smaller and smaller pieces that absorb toxic chemicals and are
difficult to pick up. Once in the creeks, polystyrene bits either continue downstream or
catch on fallen trees amongst other
trash.
During
rainfall that overflows the creeks, the
trash that has dammed then washes downstream to the Potomac River, the region's .
main source of
drinking
water. Whether they remain local or are washed out to sea,
polystyrene particles persist indefinitely, becoming part of the food chain when eaten
by plankton, birds, fish, and eventually by us.
The best solution to this pervasive and toxic pollution is to limit its sources and
prevent its usage.
This
legislation would reduce the unnecessary use of polystyrene
foam products, a convenience that has become a menace to our natural landscapes
and waterways. Moreover, there are established alternatives to these products. Rock
Creek Conservancy strongly supports Bill No. 41-14.
2
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Montgomery County Council, October 14, 2014 Hearing
Testimony IN SUPPORT of Bill 41-14
I am providing this testimony on behalf of the Neighbors of the
Northwest Branch. We are a SOl(c)(3) nonprofit volunteer watershed
organization committed to restoring the health of the 19-mile long
stream so this urban treasure can be safely enjoyed by wildlife, our
families, and generationsto come.
In pursuit of our mission, we maintain a program of action, education,
and advocacy. Our members strive to protect the watershed by
removing invasive plants and planting native species, supporting
reforestation projects and the construction of rain gardens, regularly
monitoring sites for changes in water quality, and organizing trash
cleanups along the tributary every spring and fall.
P.O. 'Box
4314
SiEver
Spri:na.
:M1J
20914-4314
James Graham
President
John
F'!Y
Secretary
LarryHttsh
Treasurer
As
residents of the Anacostia's major tributary, we take very seriously
our responsibility to lessen the burden on colleagues downstream who
are striving to restore the river's tidal main stem. As you may be aware,
both the Anacostia Riverkeeper and the Anacostia Watershed Society
have identified polystyrene foam as one of the most common types of
trash in the tidal river, the latter reporting that it comprises as much as
20% by volume of the trash they encounter.
During the biannual cleanups of the Neighbors of the Northwest Branch,
we routinely remove tires, bottles, paper, and other trash from the
stream and the surrounding woods, but polystyrene foam is different. It
is much more difficult to retrieve, whether with nets, or with garbage
AnneAmbler
Outreach Chair
Suzanne Donohue
JimFary
Glenn Welch
Edward Murtagh
Liaison, Friends of
Sligo Creek
******
grabbers or by hand, and is thus far more likely to evade us and flow
further downstream.
Given the buoyancy of polystyrene foam, what escapes our efforts will
likely continue down the river and end up bobbing in the Bay, littering
the beach at Ocean City, or endlessly swirling within the ever-growing
trash island in the middle of the Atlantic. Whatever its destination, it will
pose a health threat to wildlife as they ingest lethal particles mistaking
them for food on the water's surface.
And those particles that elude us will be out there a very long time.
Indeed, had Captain John Smith gotten "take out" when he was
exploring the Anacostia and tossed a Styrofoam food container
overboard, bits of his trash might still with us today. Some have
estimated that polystyrene foam floating in the relative cool and
Ehine Lamirande
Chair, Woodmoor
GreenTeam
\¥\\lw.neighborsnwb.org
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darkness of the ocea n can last as long as 400 years. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration's Marine Debris Program, perhaps a bit more cautiously, simply states that it will
degrade, but will never "go away".
Not all environmental problems have simple, clear-cut solutions, but luckily some do. The
Neighbors of the Northwest Branch have seen with our own eyes the positive impact that the
County's fee on plastic bags has had on reducing such trash in our beautiful stream and we fully
expect that passage ofthis bill will have an equally beneficial effect.
So we ask that the County Council pass Bill 41-14 and we invite you to join us at our next cleanup
on October 25, at Burnt Mills Park.
James Graham, President
307 lexington Drive
Silver Spring, MD 20901
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Testimony Supporting Montgomery County Council
Bill 41-14,
Banning single-use polystyrene foam containers, and more
October 14, 2014
Daniel C. Smith, Director of Public Policy and Advocacy
Anacostia Watershed Society
4302 Baltimore Avenue
Bladensburg, MD 20710
I am Dan Smith, Director of Policy and Advocacy for the Anacostia Watershed Society (AWS) here
to
speak in favor of Bill No. 41·14 to ban the use and sale of most single-use polystyrene foam
products. AWS is focused on restoring the Anacostia River to fishable and swimmable conditions as
mandated by the Clean Water Act of 1972. Our goal is to restore the river by 2025, a challenging,
but feasible goal. Styrofoam products are a major scourge of the river. Not only are they unsightly,
but they are a threat to wildlife, to ecological systems and to sustainability.
AWS operates a trash trap in Nash Run, a stream that collects runoff and trash from a small area of
Maryland and the District and then flows into Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens, the nation's only
National Park for water plants.
It
is from Nash Run that we have over four years of detailed data on
the amount and composition oftrash from this part of our watershed. Other studies and assessments
have been done by county, state and federal agencies to develop plans, strategies and requirements
to clean the river, including for the three federal stonnwater (MS4) permits issued in the watershed,
and for the Anacostia Trash
~L
(only the second river in the country to be found impaired to
such a degree by trash to require establishing specific pollution limits).
The Metropolitan Washington Council of Govemment's 2007 Anacostia Watershed Trash
Reduction Strategy, for example, asks jurisdictions to fund trash reduction programs and to
"Improve enactment and enforcement of laws to reduce trash."
The attached graph and photo shows the composition of trash collected from the trash trap we
custom built and now maintain for the District at Nash Run. Styrofoam comprises more
than
30% of
the trash at times (by volume). The average amount removed monthly over the past four years is
21 % by volume. These findings are the result of a meticulous effort to separate the entire month's
trash by categories including plastic bags, beverage containers, polystyrene foam, and other
materials.
Because Styrofoam is much lighter by volume than other trash we measure it by the amount of
space it takes up, not weight. We consistently find that two of every ten bags of trash are foam cups,
plates, and "clamshells." And let me be very clear, this only includes largely intact foam products.
As soon as these products begin breaking up, they quickly become fragments that no trash trap can
collect. As you can from the photos included with my written testimony, it is impossible to collect
the millions of small pieces of this material. Material that we understand will not decompose ever,
or at least for four or five hundred years.
The sustainable solution to managing this waste stream and others -- since the manufacturers,
distributors, and end users of Styrofoam are unwilling to take responsibility for its secure reuse or
safe disposal-- is to ban the material outright. The disposal responsibility should NOT fall to
1
31
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Montgomery County taxpayers and agencies, or to nonprofits, volunteers, workforce development
teams, or to generations yet unborn. We are all suffering from this pollution. And it's a costly, but
losing effort.
No amount of trash traps or stream cleanups will keep our Anacostia, or Rock Creek, or Potomac or
Chesapeake Bay from the scourge of Styrofoam pollution. These efforts are very important, but
they are stop gap or transitional at best. We need a cultural shift, a change in behavior. You have the
power to aid that transition in major way with this legislation.
The measure we are considering today is a long overdue and not unexpected action for a well­
documented and long-festering problem.
In
addition to the authorities already mentioned, trash
reduction of this kind is ofkeen interest to the National Park Service, NOAA, EPA, MDE, DEP,
DDOE and DoE.
The Bag Bill has been a fantastic example ofbehavior change. It's amazing how a nickel has
caught the attention of so many people! The reduction of plastic bags at the source has been over
50%. The study released in January by DDOE reports that the District's Bag Fee Law is working
for both residents and businesses. And we are here to say that it is also working for the River.
We have conducted our annual Earth Day Clean up with partners for almost 20 years. The trash we
are finding today is refuse of a "convenient lifestyle," from food and
drink
made available
everywhere and anytime. I'm certain that you will hear from the packaging manufacturers and
sellers that this ban is an affront to their livelihood. But I am here today speaking for the Anacostia
River which has taken way too much abuse, for far too long, and whose waters long for clarity and
sustainability. "Free me from Styrofoam," is the call we hear from the River. "Stop clogging my
arteries and tributaries with trash."
In
conclusion, the Anacostia Watershed Society supports Bill 41-14 as an important way to reduce
the negative environmental and human health effects ofpolystyrene foam by reducing its use in the
County. Banning foam and requiring recyclable or compostable alternatives will have a significant
positive effect on our streams and neighborhoods. I hope Montgomery County will join
Washington, DC, in leading the region
in
preventing trash pollution at its source.
For 25 years now, AWS
has
worked to secure a strong, sustainable, smart, and successful
restoration of the river for people, wildlife and the enhancement of nearby communities.
Montgomery County and its residents have and will continue to be essential partners in efforts to
clean up the Anacostia River and its tributaries. Our work is bearing fruit. Our river is increasingly
seen as an urban oasis for recreation and a desirable location for living and working.
Thank you. And thank you for the opportunity to testify today.
The Anacostia Watershed Society is a member of the Maryland Trash Free Alliance and also
supports the work and testimony of our many collaborators and allies including the Institute for
Local Self Reliance, DC Environmental Network, Sierra Club, Neighbors of the Northwest Branch,
Alice Ferguson Foundation, and the many other advocates for clean water and healthy communities
who serve Anacostia, Rock Creek and Potomac Communities.
Attachments.
2
2.
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Mar. 2010
Apr. 2010
May. 2010
Jun. 2010
Jul.2010
Aug. 2010
Sep.2010
Oct. 2010
Nov. 2010
Dec. 2010
Jan. 2011
Feb. 2011
Mar. 2011
Apr. 2011
May. 2011
Jun. 2011
Jul. 2011
Aug. 2011
Sep.2011
Oct. 2011
Nov. 2011
Dec. 2011
Jan. 2012
Feb. 2012
Mar. 2012
Apr. 2012
May. 2012
Jun. 2012
Jul. 2012
Aug. 201
Sep.201
Oct. 201
Nov. 201
Dec. 201
Jan. 201
Feb. 201
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Small Particles of Styrofoam
It is impossible
to pick up all
these small
particles of
Styrofoam
ANACOSTIA
WATERSHE
---SOCIETY
www.anacostiaws.org
rlSiirlciiitmeClrm
May 2012 by Nash Run Trash Trap was presented by category.
Bottles&Cans
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\1r
Sugarloaf Citizens"
Association
Protecting Our Rural Legacy
Linden Fann, 20900 Martinsburg Rd., PO Box 218, Dickerson, MD 20842
www.SugarloaK:itizens.org
• Tel. 301-349-4889
Good Evening. My name is Beth Daly and I am testifying on behalf of the Sugarloaf Citizens Association
(Sugarloaf) and Montgomery Countryside Alliance (MCA). Both Sugarloaf and MCA work to preserve the
agricultural tradition and environmental health in upper Montgomery County.
With that mission in mind, I am here today to register our support of Bill 41-14 introduced by Councilmember
Riemer and co-sponsored by Councilmembers Eirich and Leventhal. By prohibiting the use of polystyrene food
service products -commonly known as "Styrofoam" -and requiring the use of compostable or recyclable food
service ware, we are taking an important step towards a healthier and less polluted Montgomery County.
Styrofoam does not break down and contributes to litter in our waterways and green spaces. Additionally,
styrene-a main ingredient in Styrofoam-is a known carcinogen. Our County's incinerator is located in
Dickerson--the heart ofthe Agricultural Reserve. In calendar year
2012,
approximately
9,000
tons of styrene
products were combusted at the County's Resource Recovery Facility. While there is no data to breakout the
amount of styrofoam that is burned, it is safe to say that those who live and work in the shadows of the
incinerator would be pleased to have less pollutants in the air.
We appreciate your consideration of our views and thank you for serving our County.
Sugarloaf Citizens' Association is a tax-exempt organization - I.R.S. Code Sec. SOl(c)(3).
All contributions are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law
@
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October 14, 2014
'Iesdmony'Supporting a Ban On Polystyrene Containers
in
Montgomery County
(Bill
41~
14)
Councilmember Riemer's bill
to
ban styrofoam
containers, cups and packing material and replace
them with compostable
or
recyclable malerials would significantly improve the environment and
health
of
people in Montgomery County. Montgomery Co. should follow the lead
of
the District
of
Columbia, NY City,
San
Francisco,
San
Jose, and Seattle
by
passing this bill.
A.
St;yrofoam
is
bad
for
the environment:
.
Polystyrene products are made with
petrol~
a non-sustainable and heavily polluting resource.
Styrofoam
is not biodegradable and cannot be"recycled. It takes
500
years
to decompose.
1.
It creates a huge amount of waste and pollution.
According to the California Integrated
~ste
Management Board, its environmental impacts were
second highest, behind aluminum.
A 1986 EPA report on solid waste named the polystyrene manufacturing process as the fifth largest
creator of hazardous waste
in
the United States.
This
is
because of the product manufacturing process, a
the use and disposal of
the
products, energy consumption, greenhouse gas effect, and total
environmental effect.
2.
It litters the environment. espedallY waterwqys
Studies
by
the D.C. District Department
of
the Environment, the Montgomery County Department
of
the Environment, and the Maryland Department
of
the Environment confirm that
styrofoam
is
a
significant source
of
litter, espedally in watersheds. Because
it
is
lightweight,
it
goes through gutters
and stormdrains into waterways.
The
farther it travels, the smaller the pieces get, which makes it hard
to
clean up.
Styrofoam
contributes
22%
of
the trash
in
an
Anacostla River tributary, according to the
D.C. Department
of
the Environment. It contributes
9000
tons to
lhe lfaste
s~am
of
Montgomery
County.
.
"-"-
~...
>
."
The
United Nations Environment
Progmm
estimated in
2006
that
every
square mile
of
ocean
has
46,000 pieces of floating plastic
in
it.
When it gets into the watersheds, it
is
ingested
by
marine life,
causing harm
to
it.
3.
Styrofoam contributes
to
climate change.
Styrofoam is
made with
.hydrochlorofluorocarbons
(HCFC),
which,
as a greenhouse gas,
has
1000
times greater effect
on
global warming than carbon dioxide.
B.
Styrofoam
is
bad
for
people's
health;
1. Styrofoam releases toxic
gasses
when burned.
It
releases
two
toxic gases.
One
Is benzene,
a
highly
carcinogeniC substance.
The
other
is
styrene, which is highly toxic and
is
readily absorbed through the
skin, respiratory system and
GI
track and nervous system, and can cause deep unconsdousness and
death.
The
vapor can damage the eyes and mucous membranes. Styrene
is
a
neurotoxin that attacks the
central and peripheml nervous
systems.
The
accumulation
of
these highly fat-soluble materials in the
fat-rich tissues
of
the brain, spinal cord,
and
peripheral nerves
is
correlated with acute
or
chronic
functional impairment
of
the nervous system. Styrofoam has_been found in
100% of
human's fat tissue.
37
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It also releases
a
great deal
of
soot when burned.
This
is
bad for the respiratory system and increases
asthma and allergies.
Styrofoam containers leach styrene into warm
food
and drinks, alcohol, oily
food,
and acidic
food.
Thus,
we
should avoid drinking tea
With
lemon, coffee with dairy cream, fruit juices, alcoholic
beverages and
Wine
(rom styrofoam cups. Red
Wine
instantly dissolves st;yrofoam.
Food
containing
vitamin A decomposes when heated in styrofoam containers. It
is
not safe
to
microwave in styrofoam
because it leaches toxins into the
food.
2.
Styrofoam leaches
the
toxin styrene into warm
food
and drinks:
c.
Chamber
of
Commerce
and RestaurantAssociadons; T'a/seNotel There is
no
reason
to
use
st;yrofoam
anY
more.
There
are
competitively priced alternatives, which
are
recyclable and
compostable. Containers, cups and packing peanuts can all
be
made out
of
recyclable and compostable
materials for'only slightly
more.
.'
"Why Biodegradable Take-Out Boxes and Cups are the
Way
to
Go~"
Great Allegheny Passage
Sustainable Business Network,
Apr~113;
2011
,
"While these alternatives do cost more than the traditional Styrofoam and paper cups and containers, their
additional cost is relatively marginal over the course of a business
year.
Whereas Styrofoam cups cost
$25
per
1000,
biodegradable cups can cost as little as
$100
for
1000.
This means that
if
your business uses
1000
disposable cups a year, the additional bast would
be
only $75
per
year, which
is
the amount of money
you
might make in a single business day. With take-out containers, the additional
costs
for biodegradables can
be
less
than
$140 a year, if your business goes through
1000
of them in that time span."
Companies
like
Starbucks, McDonalds, and Chipotle have already moved
away
(rom st;yro(oam.
This
will significantly reduce the amount
of
sttrofoam and attract environmentally
oriented
customers.
Montgomery County should follow the lead
of
these enlightened companies.
Molly Hlluck
4004 Dresden St.
Kensington,
MD.
20895-3812
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\'?
October 14,2014 Testimony
by Margot Bloch
to the Montgomery County Council
in support of
Bill 41-14,
Solid Wastes .. Food Service Products
-!Packaging
Materials - Requirements
Good evening. My name is Margot Bloch. I am a 9th grade student at Montgomery Blair High School
and have been a member of the Young Activist Club for
7
years. Thank you for the opportunity to testify
tonight.
I
am here tonight to testify in support of Bill
41-14
that would ban expanded polystyrene food service
products by food service businesses.
Because
I
am a student and I have been working on this issue for so long, this is very important to me
and also to our young activist club as a whole. And this is why
I
am here to testify, to discuss reasons
and facts supporting the'passing of this bill.
There are many problems with polystyrene in our school and in our community. In is a huge health
concern for everyone- it is made from styrene which is a known neurotoxicant and a reasonably
anticipated human carcinogen. We should most definitely not be using it to serve our food and drinks
on.
Another big problem with using PS is pollution. First of all it is made from fossil fuels, and drilling and
use causes pollution locally and globally with climate change. The Dickerson incinerator bums our trash
and so chemicals go in to the air we breathe.
Also, Polystyrene is not just Styrofoam, the expanded foam form. It is all number plastics with a
number 6 resin code. This includes many different hard plastics which are also very commonly used for
food service ware. Some examples are red Solo cups, clear plastic clamshells, clear cups. We should
not be using any of it to eat or drink.
I am glad that the bill prohibits the sale of styrofoam products at stores and I support getting rid of the '
rest of the polystyrene plates, bowls and silverware in our school cafeterias. It would be great to get the
YAC pilot tray-washing project at Piney Branch Elementary School to happen. Right now we still don't
have the go ahead to do the dishwasher project even though we've raised
$10,000
to pay for
everything for a year long pilot. YAC's work on this has led to MCPS changing the styrofoam trays to
paperboard trays-- but, it is still trash because the paper trays cannot be recycled due to food
contamination and there is no composting yet available. Because of all this, we should still do just a
pilot project of reusable trays and see it that not only $ets rid of most of the trash but also saves the
school system money as we have calculated.·
.
Please expand the bill to cover all types of
#6
polystyrene used for foodservice ware, and add a pilot
dishwasher project for reusables in the school.
Thank you for letting me speak and we appreciate the leadership this county is taking to join many
other places in banning the use of toxic polystyrene food service ware.
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Madame Walker Theatre Center
Our heroine, a
ladybug~
is an orphan
who
liv~es
with Mr.
&
Mrs.
'Roache. He gives her
advice: "We all have to
adapt to survive."
Mrs.'Roache gives
advice to Aunt Beatrice,
who has the "Bug Blues"
because ofhusbug,
Buddy.
"
f
,
.ii'
~,
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\'"
October 14,2014 Testimony
by Anna Brookes, on
behalf
of the Young Activist Dub
to the Montgomery County Council
in support of
Bill 41-14, Solid Wastes - Food Service Products - Packaging Materials - Requirements
Good evening. My name is Anna Brookes and I am speaking on behalf ofthe Young Activist
Club
in
Takoma Park.
Thank you for the opportunity to testify.
I'm here to
talk
about the proposed bill banning polystyrene foam for use as packaging or food
service
in
businesses Montgomery county.
Since 2008, the young activist club has been working to raise awareness about the problems with
polystyrene
in
our schools and in our community.
Polystyrene is, first off: bad for the environment. It's not recyclable, not compostable, and never
biodegrades, and usually ends up polluting our oceans or waterways. Bqt polystyrene is also bad
for people's health. It's made from a chemical called styrene, which the FDA recognizes as a
known neurotoxicant and a reasonably anticipated human carcinogen- meaning it causes brain
damage and likely causes cancer.
Back
in
2012, you passed Resolution No. 17-522, which supported the elimination of
polystyrene foodware in County government cafeterias.
Thank
you!
I am here tonight to urge you to
p~s
Bill 41-14 that would ban expanded polystyrene food
service products by food service businesses.
We like that this current bill:
Prohibits the sale of styrofoam products at stores
Covers institutional cafeterias, including those operated by County agencies
As you may know, we have proposed a pilot tray-washing project at Piney Branch Elementary
SchooL Unfortunately, Superintendent Starr and
the
county school board won't let us do the
dishwasher project even though we've raised $10,000 to cover all costs. But due to our efforts,
MCPS
has
decided to replace all styrofoam trays with these paperboard trays. However, we
think reusable trays are still worthy of study and could ultimately save the school system
money. The paper trays cannot be recycled due to food contamination and there
is
no
compo sting yet available.
In
addition, school cafeterias are still using styrofoam for bowls and
cups and polystyrene for the forks and spoons, which are wastefully individually wrapped in
plastic.
We request that you:
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Expand the bill to cover all types ofpolystyrene used for foodservice ware
Ensure this bill covers MCPS and
all
polystyrene used in the school system
Make sure the prohibition on sale ofpolystyrene products stays in the bill
Polystyrene is not
just
Styrofoam, the expanded foam form.
It
is
all
number 6 type
plastics. These are examples: red Solo cups, clear plastic clamshells, clear cups.
• Consider an amendment requiring MCPS
to
pilot a
tray
washing project
to
assess costs
between single-use trays and durable trays
• Consider separate legislation to develop composting systems
There are thousands ofalternative products to polystyrene and dozens ofcities that have banned
polystyrene.
In
Takoma Park, more
than
37 businesses have taken our No-Polystyrene Pledge,
and just last night at a hearing about a similar bill being passed in Takoma Park, the chair of the
Takoma Langley-Crossraods buisness associatio said she had talked to al the biusnesses there
and that almost all ofthem were completley supportive ofthe act, even though they would have
to stop using cheap Styrofoam..
.
When lead in gasoline and paint was found to be toxic, it was banned and alternatives became
available. The same is already happening with
polystyrene~
Cost should not be an issUe. Thank
you for your leadership in protecting my health and the health ofall members ofour
county.
Thank you.
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,t'\
Hi!
I'm Leo Blain, and I'm also here on behalf of the Young Activists Club. First off. I
would like to thank: you so much for having us here tonight. I would like to urge you
to
pass bill 41-14 that
will
prohibit the use of expanded polystyrene foodware in
businesses and schools.
As
Anna already said. polystyrene
is
not good for your
health. It is a reasonably anticipated human carcinogen, so it is suspected
to
cause
cancer, and it
is
a lmown
neurotoxican~
so it is especially important to keep it out of
our schools where it can damage young students developing brains. Aside from
being harmful
to
humans. it
is
also harmful
to
the environment; the only way
to
get
rid of it is to burn it. The cardboard trays that have been instated
in
Montgomery
County cafeterias are definitely a step up from polystyrene, but still cannot be
recycled due to food contamination, and cannot be composted, as Montgomery
County does not have a compost system
in
place. Bill 41-14 will ban expanded
polystyrene, which is great, however we urge you to consider expanding the bill
to
cover all types of polystyrene used for food service ware, such as solocups and
plastic clamshells. One other part of the bill we would like to revise is the part that
states
1'Notwithstanding
any other provision" a county facility, agency, department,
contractor, or lessee may use disposable food service ware already purchased as of
the effective date of this act until the supplies are exhausted, or until January 1,
2017."
This may allow people
to
purchase polystyrene up
to
January 1
st
of 2017. We
would like to urge you to change the bill so that people are not allowed to purchase
polystyrene up
to
this point. as allowing people to purchase it would cause continual
harm to people and the environment. Once again thankyou very much.
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October 14,2014 Testimony
by Nadine Bloch
to the Montgomery County Council
in support of
Bill 41-14,
Solid Wastes - Food Service Products - Packaging Materials - Requirements
Good evening. Thank you for the opportunity to testify. I am here tonight in support of Bill 41-14 that
would ban expanded polystyrene food service products by food service businesses.
As a parent, an environmentalist, and someone who cares deeply about our local community and the
global environment, I am here to speak out in support of healthy products, healthy children, and
healthy communities. We know that there are corporations and individuals who are more concerned
with making money than protecting people and our planet; I would like to remind the Council that there
is a long and proud tradition of banning products that have been found to be poisonous and toxic in
spite of the seeming financial incentives to continue their use-- including ozone depleting chemicals,
cigarettes, lead in paint and gasoline, DDT and other pesticides, just to name a few.
All
#6
plastics have styrene as their base monomer, and therefore all are implicated as a known
neurotoxicant and now reasonably anticipated human carcinogen.
(http://www8.nationalacademies.org/onpinews/newsitem.aspx?RecordID=18725)
Plastic leachate of endocrine disruptors is
also implicated in obesity and learning disabilities in children.
(http://www.nytimes.coml2013/01/20/opinion/sunday/kristof-warnings-from-a-f1abby-mouse.html?ref=opinion&_r= 1&)
Dispa rate
impacts of this toxicity will be born by those who can least afford it, as the school lunch program
serves predominantly low income youth of color. Production facilities, as well as incinerators, often
pollute surrounding areas and result in negative health impacts for workers and local ecology. All of
this will cost us, the non-corporate beneficiaries of plastic production, a huge amount in externalized
health care and special educational fees. Unfortunately the way our accounting is set up it is difficult to
quantify the externalized costs of continuing to use toxic PS; if it were factored into the County's
calculations it would be clearly more economical in the long run to support using healthy alternatives.
Congratulations to the sponsors of this bill for following up on the 2012 Resolution No. 17-522, which
supported the elimination of polystyrene food ware in County government cafeterias.
It is smart to include a prohibition on the sale of styrofoam products, and that it covers all institutional
cafeterias, so please keep these critical pieces in the final bill.
As well, to make the Bill most effective at keeping our people and communities healthy, please:
Expand the bill to cover all types of polystyrene used for foodservice ware
• Set a swift timeline for MCPS to remove all polystyrene from foodservice in the school
system
Consider an amendment requiring MCPS to pilot a tray washing project to assess costs
between single-use trays and durable trays ( call on the Takoma Park VAC to use their
$10k to support this pilot.)
• Consider separate legislation to develop composting systems, a vocational/technical
program to support this in the County, and develop a revenue stream.
I have personally talked with many businesses in my town who are in support of this ban, and who
have already transitioned from toxic PS to alternatives, or who are in the process of doing so. Almost
40 businesses in Takoma Park have signed onto the PS Free Pledge of the VAC; and Crossroads
Community association has support from its businesses and vendors as well.
There are thousands of alternative products to polystyrene and dozens of municipalities that have
already banned polystyrene and it is encouraging that MoCo is potentially following on this path.
Thank you for your leadership on this issue, please support an expanded PS Ban for MoCo.
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Montgomery Council Hearing on
Bill 41-14,
Solid Wastes· Food Service Products· Packaging Materials - Requirements
Testimony Supporting
October
14
th,
2014
By Brenda Platt
Co-Director, Institute for Local Self-Reliance
2001
SSt., NW, Suite
570,
Washington, DC
20009
bplatt@ilsr.org • www.ilsr.org
Thank you for the opportunity to testify today and for your support in making Montgomery County
a more sustainable and livable community. My name is Brenda Platt and I am the co-director of the
Washington, DC-based nonprofit, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR). I have worked
28
years on solid waste issues and authored numerous reports on waste incineration, reuse, recycling,
composting, and zero waste planning. I currently head up ILSR's Sustainable Plastics and
Cornposting Makes $en$e Projects, co-chair the Sustainable Biomaterials Collaborative, and co-lead
a Montgomery-County-based Young Activist Club that is focused on getting polystyrene out of their
school and community. I am an expert on polystyrene, compostable foodservice ware, and
composting. I have also been a Montgomery County resident since
1989.
I am testifying today to support
Bi1l41·14,
which restricts the use of expanded polystyrene
foodservice products. I have identified and documented more than two dozen similar laws passed
in other jurisdictions, and helped to pass the District's law earlier this year.
There are many valid reasons to restrict polystyrene foodservice products.
As
a mother, the top
one for me is public health.
Health Implications: Polystyrene is made from the styFenemonomer; which is a known
neurotoxicant and was elevated in
2011
from being a possible human carcinogen to being
reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen.
1
This means there is a huge body of evidence
now linking styrene to human cancers. No polymerization process is
100%
efficient, so styrene
remains in polystyrene and has been found in
100%
of adipose (fatty tissue) samples, meaning it is
widespread and prevalent in all of us. It even crosses the placenta barrier. According to a
2000
World Health Organization report, "The ability of styrene monomer to migrate from polystyrene
packaging to food has been reported in a number of publications and probably accounts for the
greatest contamination of foods by styrene monomer."2 You may hear that polystyrene is safe
because it's FDA-approved and regulated. Sadly, we know that the science and history of the
regulatory process proves otherwise (consider how long it took to ban lead in paint and gasoline, or
the current battle to ban BPA, despite hundreds of peer-reviewed research studies). Products
approved in the marketplace today may well likely be banned tomorrow as policy keeps pace with
science.
Polystyrene Is Among the Most Toxic Plastics to Make: The process of making plastics
consumes a mindboggling 244 million tons oftoxic chemicals. In addition to styrene, polystyrene is
made from benzene, another carcinogen. There is now a new tool, the Plastics Scorecard, that has
See the US Department of Health and Human Services,
12th Report on Carcinogens
(2011), which is a congressionally
mandated. sdence-based, public health document that is prepared for the HHS Secretary by the National Toxicology
Program. The report identifies agents, substances, mixtures, and exposure drcumstances that are
known
or
reasonably
anticipated
to
cause cancer in humans. Available online at: http://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/1objectid=03C9AF75-ElBF-FF40­
DBA9EC0928DF8B15
2
See Styrene Chapter, Air Quality Guidelines-2nd Edition, WHO Regional Office for Europe, Copenhagen, Denmark, 2000.
1
Institute for Local Self-Reliance
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been designed to evaluate the chemical footprints of plastics.
3
Five of the ten common plastics
evaluated received failing scores - zero out of a possible 100 pOints - due to the fact that toxic
chemicals were used at every single stage oftheir production. But only one of these - polystyrene ­
is commonly used for serve food. See attached chart, Addendum A. This underscores the rationale
for targeting polystyrene above other plastics used for foodservice ware.
In the absence of any action at the federal level, dozens of cities and counties have passed laws to
restrict the use of polystyrene in foodservice ware. Many ofthese laws point to the human health
impacts to workers and consumers. Montgomery County's bill, if passed, would be the first
comprehensive law in Maryland, and would become a model for other cities to emulate.
Prohibit Sale of Polystyrene Foodservice Products: Thank you for going beyond the District's
bill by prohibiting the sale ofpolystyrene packaging peanuts and the sale of expanded polystyrene
foodservice ware products. Allowing grocery stores and packaging vendors to sell polystyrene
foodservice products for home or community use would be a loophole that will weaken the
effectiveness of the law. West Hollywood's law is one that also prohibits the sale ofpolystyrene
food ware, not just prepared food packaged in it. Sunnyvale, CA's recently passed law (November
2013), bans aU commercial sales of expanded polystyrene food containers beginning April 22, 2015,
a year later than its ban applicable to food service establishments. When the American Chemistry
Council testified at the DC City Council's hearing, they pointed out the loophole in the District's law.
Glad you are closing it.
Strengthen Bill by Targeting All Polystyrene for Foodservice Ware: If anything, you could
strengthen the proposed bilI by targeting all types of polystyrene used to serve food and beverages.
All types of polystyrene, #6 resin code, are made from styrene and benzene and pose health
dangers. Cups, take-out containers, and plastic cutlery are frequently made from a clear, white or
colored non-foam rigid type of polystyrene. West Hollywood (CA), The City of South San Francisco
(GA), the City of Hermosa Beach (CA), and Brookline (MA) have laws that go beyond expanded
polystyrene to cover the rigid form as well. Because ofthe health concerns of eating off a product
derived from a material anticipated to cause human cancers, all forms of polystyrene for
foodservice should be banned. Consider that styrene is directly soluble in alcohol and that the
popular blue, red, and yellow polystyrene cups (made by Solo Cup) are the standard choice for
.
serving beer at parties.
A Word about Encouraging Use of Reusable, Recyclable, or Compostable Foodservice Ware: .
Glad that this bill, like DC's, requires single-use foodservice ware to be recyclable or compostable
starting January 2017. Other cities have done this too. Seattle passed its foodservice packaging
restrictions in two phases. Phase I restricted use of polystyrene. Phase 2, implemented 18 months
later, required foodservice packaging to be reusable, recyclable, or compostable.
4
Virtually all
foodservice establishments now use compostable ware for take-out prepared foods and even food
trucks have bins to collect food waste and compostable ware. See photos in Addendum B. The
private compost facility serving the Seattle region - Cedar Grove Compost - is one of the most
comprehensive information sources on compostable products, and works directly with the City to
label products effectively and to educate citizens.
S
Dick Lily with the Seattle Public Utilities credits
the biobased products industry for enabling his City's packaging requirements to work, pointing to
3
4
http://www.bizngo.org/static/eejmages/uploads/plastics/executive_summary_plastics_scorecard.pdf
For information on Seattle's food service packaging requirements, visit:
http://www.seattle.gov/util/forbusinesses/sQUdwaste/foodyardbusinesses/commercial/foodpacka~ingreQuirements/.
Ordinance 123307, which took effect June 19, 2010, permits Seattle Public Utilities to issue director's rules for temporary
waivers to the food service ware and packaging requirements set out two years ago in Ordinance 122751.
5
See Cedar Grove's web site athttp://cedar-grove,com/commercia!faccepted-items/
for Local Self-Reliance
2
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the wide availability of compostable service ware, which went from 70 products to 700 in 3 years,
and now has reached more than 4,780.
6
However, this part of the bill will only be effective if there are places to compost compostable
products. Most food scraps and compostable ware collected in Maryland has been going to a very
large scale facility in Delaware. This facility has been having problems and underscores the need for
close·in locally based composting. I urge not only to pass this bill but also to look at policies to
advance comprehensive locally based composting in the county.
6
See Addendum B to this testimony; and the Biodegradable Products Institute web site at:
http://products.bpiworld.org/ companies/ category /foodservice
Institute for Local Self·Reliance
3
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Addendum A
4
I
Clean Production Action The
Plastics Scorecard
(Version 1.0)
FIGURE
ES-1Progress to Safer Chemicals in Polymer Manufacturing
Most
100
Benign
Polylactic Acid
58.33
Polyethylene
50.00
Polypropylene
I
I
50.00
I
50
Ethylene
Vinyl
Acetate
Styrene
Butadiene
Rubber
Acrylonitrile
Butadiene
Styrene
0
0
16067l
Polycarbonate
,
Most
Hazards
01
Less Production
o
For each manufacturing
step,
no core chemical inputs are chemicals
of high concern as defined
by
Green Screen- Benchmark 1.
,
0
1
11
""
0
Polystyrene
0
Polyvinyl
Chloride
4
· -
..
­
[
8
33
0
Polyethylene
Terephthalate
..
More Production
Every manufacturing step involves the use of chemicals of high
concern as defined
by
GreenScreen- Benchmark 1.
~
Some manufacturing steps include chemicals of high concern
as defined
by
GreenScreen- Benchmark I. and others do not.
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Addendum B: Local Government Policies Make a Difference
Consider Seattle: Compostlng Infrastructure Well Established throughout City
(In part due,to City's foodservice packaging requirements)
Fast food, outdoors.
DIol'l_
_ .. .., ... _
The restaurant scene, so to speak.
Street fairs and summer festivals
What made it work?
1. A strong regional com poster.
'
o
Based
on emblished residential
Food
and
Vard WIIst.
eDUec:tlon.
~.
Product
o
testing to prove
compostability.
So
restaurants know
what they
<In u•••
3. Strong drive to increase commercial food
, waste collection for composting.
o
Syne'IY
with
front·of house compombles diSposal
In
quick serve
remurants
(QSRs).
4. Thanks
to
industry, Increasing availability of
compostable service ware.
o
From 70
Ie
700 produc:ts In 3
years.
What made it work?
5. Lots of outreach to restaurant and
packaging industries.
ClPf'oduaWB
and _ _ .......
_povduds
' f t R _:
7. Tallking
to the public.
Free signs available on line that can be
customized
by
each restaurant.
~~~
~~/.,..,:.
a
~e<meotinp\h.r""""'_"""""""',\'IIi
a
dislri~l~
Dir'oct
moll
Ie
Soow.
food
.....tat _ _ -
indud'mr
Institutions.
;
CI
ReeuJor _ ' "
ot
rest.uront
Industry
tnIde _
Cln.ous.ndsafl1l.mIb-otIIll
a
And. J.w!ina
for
EPS
UN,
r-<. .­ , -
""'"=
~_.'
.ge.
,r"
6. Local curbside and commercial
recycling systems
that
accept coated
papers and nearly all plastics.
Source: Dick Lily, Manager for Waste Prevention and Product Stewardship, Seattle Public Utilities, "How Local
Government Policies Can Impact The Biopolymers Industry: Seattle's Regulation of Single-Use Food Service
Packaging,n Presentation atthe International Biopolymers Symposium, San Antonio, October 15-17, 2012.
Institute for Local Self-Reliance
4
'(i9)
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Addendum B: This is Seattle. Why Not Montgomery Co.?
.:.
Institute for Local SeH-Reliance
5
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i'Jorth1rJ
te
Mall
Starbur:ko
Cuff.....
.:'0
DC'1:l
s
hot
dO~l
Gafe
Institute for Local Self-Reliance
6
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\C\..
Testimony on Bill #41-14­
Solid Waste (Trash) - Food Services Products ­
Packaging Materials - Requirement
Position: Support
Trash
Free
MARYLAND
Good evening, my name is Julie Lawson. I am the director ofthe Trash Free Maryland Alliance, a network of
more than 60 organizations and businesses dedicated to reducing trash pollution through a common policy
agenda. We strongly support the proposed ban on polystyrene foam and are thrilled by the County's leadership
on this issue.
Our members who hold community and stream cleanups can speak to just how much foam pollution they find
in County streets, parks, and streams, so I just have a few points about implementation ofthe ban. I am happy to
work with the committee and the Department on any additional research, development ofthe regulations, and
implementation.
- We
can
do better
than New
York
City. Earlier this year New York City passed a ban, but it is delayed for a
year to allow for a pilot effort to recycle foam across the city. The market for food-contaminated foam recycling
is weak and requires costly infrastructure
and
transportation. I hope that the County does not cave to industry
claims about recycling which simply serve as a distraction and delay from real progress in cleaning up our
neighborhoods and waterways.
- Workwith
Baltimore
and
DC. Washington, DC, passed a similar foam ban this summer, to
take
effect the
same day as this proposal The Baltimore City Council introduced a polystyrene ban in 2012, with a majority of
councilmembers signing on as cosponsors. It
is
on hold for now until a stronger plan for business outreach and
public education is in place, but there are opportunities for the County to collaborate on cooperative purchasing
agreements and resources for businesses. Having three large jurisdictions in this region ban polystyrene
will significantly increase opportunities for commercial food waste composting services as well, creating a
regional industry that could yield hundreds ofjobs while reducing the amount of material sent to
landfills.
and
incinerators. The County has a strong advantage, also, because ofresources available through the disposable bag
fund,
and capacity
within
DEP from administering and enfOrcing the Bag Law already.
- Sustainable businesses support this measure. Many food retailers already use compostable alternatives as
part of their business model. These are the types ofbusinesses that drive further economic development and the
community wants in their neighborhoods. For those businesses yet to make the
switch,
alternative packaging is
already available from the same suppliers they already use, at comparable prices. At the end of the day, packaging
is
a small fraction of overall overhead costs for food retailers, but the impact on perception, as well as the
environment, is profound. .
- Polystyrene as a
water
pollutant. One
drawback
to the a polystyrene ban compared to a disposable bag fee
is that this proposal doesn't really lead to significant behavior change, only a change in materials. However,
this change is significant for the County's environmental health. Polystyrene
is
special among plastics as it is
the most toxic in the water. It is laden with polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PARs) by virtue ofits manufacturing
process, which it then leaches into the water. In addition, according to research conducted by
Dr~
Chelsea
Rochman of the University ofCalifornia at Davis, polystyrene absorbs petrochemicals
like
fertilizer and
52
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pesticides already in the water at a rate 10 times higher than any other plastic. That means the polystyrene bits
floating in our alieady polluted
riverS
are further contaminated, potentially harming both wildlife that may
ingest it as well
as
volunteers who might pick it up during cleanup activities.
Finally, I just want to show what our plastics consumption results
in.
While the garbage patch
in
the northern
Pacific is relatively well known, these plastic soups circula:te in gyres around the world.
This
jar contains a sample
ofplastic found
in
the North Atlantic Ocean.
Thank you for your time today,
and
I look forward to any questions.
Contact:
Julie Lawson
Trash Free Maryland Alliance
1
I
i~@trashfreemaryland
.org
u
410-861-0412
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Jennifer Chambers· Hiking Along, Owner; The Siena School, Science Teacher; Leave No Trace, MD
State Advocate; American Hiking Society, Chair; Author
Why should Montgomery County ban the use of Styrofoam?
Two perspectives:
I. Hikers
A.
kids and parents love to hike on rocks and along water
B. Chair of American Hiking Society, own Hiking Along and wrote a book entitled
Best Hikes with
Kids: Washington DC, The Beltway
&
Beyond
1. multiple hikes in book along streams and rivers in MaCa
a. Potomac
b. Little Paint Branch
c. Northwest Branch
d. Rock Creek
e. Muddy Branch
f. Cabin John
g. along every stream the eye-catching, visual eye soar of Styrofoam exist (visualize)
(1)
(2)
(3)
II. Animals
floating in bits over a riffle or caught in an eddy
whole food containers lodged in the webbing of exposed tree roots
inhibits the hiker's joy and peace in the natural landscape
A.
Environmental Educator and Science teacher who wrote a book entitled
Watershed Adventures of
a
Water Bottle
1. journey of a water bottle through the Chesapeake Bay watershed and Atlantic ocean
2. perspective of the animals in my book
a. beaver - litters my dam and loqge, would you want trash in your chamber?
b. water strider - clogs the eddies preventing me from reaching the bugs that fall from the
trees
c. blue heron - my babies might think the small bits of styrofoam are bugs
d. atlantic puffin - I mistake the styrofoam and other plastiC debris in the ocean for fish
when flying high above the water
e. engage my students to understand that plastic pollution, including styrofoam, has a high
impact on the pride of our communities, the beauty of the visual, natural landscape and
the death of animals in our local and global aquatic ecosystems
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R.ESTAUR.ANT
ASSOCIATION
MalYLaND
Council Bill 41-14
Solid Waste (Trash)
-
Food Service Products
-
Packaging Materials
-
Requirements
October 14, 2014
POSITION:
Oppose as drafted
Mr. President and Members of the Montgomery County Council:
On behalf of the Montgomery County members of the
Restaurant Association
of
Maryland,
we
oppose Council Bill 41-14 as this legislation is currently drafted. However, we hope to work with
the bill sponsors and the Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy
&
Environment Committee on
compromise language to address some of our concerns and mitigate the negative impact on the
foodservice industry.
Of particular concern to our industry is the cost and performance of altemative compostable or
recyclable disposable food service ware. According to the feedback we received from some of
our Montgomery County members regarding this legislation, compostable and recyclable
alternatives can cost over twice as much as expanded polystyrene. Moreover, finding suitable,
safe, affordable alternatives for hot food and beverages can be particularly challenging. While
this legislation allows for exemptions if the County Executive determines that no affordable
compostable or recyclable alternatives exist, the bill does not define the term "affordable." We
hope to work with the sponsors and the Committee to determine an appropriate definition.
While some of our members seem less concerned about banning the use of expanded
polystyrene, there is Significant industry concern about mandating the use of more expensive
compostable products when most of these alternatives are likely to end up in the regular solid
waste stream as opposed to a composting facility. There is also industry confusion about which
disposable food service ware is accepted in the County recycling collection program.
For these reasons, we hope that we can work with the Council to clarify some of these issues
and reach a compromise that will reduce any unintended burden on our industry.
Sincerely,
Melvin
R.
Thompson
Senior Vice President
r
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October 14,2014
RE:
Testimony in Opposition to Bill No. 41-14 Solid Waste (Trash)- Food
Service Products - Packaging Material - Requirements
And
In Support of a County-Wide EPS Recycling Program
Council Office Building
100 Maryland Avenue, 5th Floor
Rockville, MD 20850
Banning foam (expanded polystyrene - ESP) will not eliminate Montgomery County's
litter issues. Litter is the improper disposal of a product regardless of the material for
which it is made. Litter is the result of irresponsible human behavior. Municipalities may
incorrectly believe that if they ban foam their litter/waste issues will be significantly
resolved. This is not the case. After San Francisco banned foam, the city conducted an
audit and it was confirmed that eliminating all foam food service did not reduce the
volume of litter but simply changed the type of litter found. In addition, in Carmel,
California, City staff confirmed in a June 3, 2008 staff report that since the inception of
its 1989 ordinance to ban foam food service ware, "... the problem of food packaging
waste litter has not improved". Foam makes up less than 1.5 percent of Montgomery
County's solid waste stream and only a small percentage of that 1.5% is 'from foam food
service products.
I.
Foodservice Packaging Materials Life Cycle Analysis
Franklin Associates Ltd conducted an extensive and comparative analysis at the energy
and environmental performance of foodservice packaging products made with
polystyrene foam, bleached paperboard or corrugated paperboard, including hot and
cold beverage cups and sandwich clamshells.
i
This comprehensive study meets
international standards (ISO 14040) and has been independently peer-reviewed. The