Delaware the Newest State to Pass Plastic Bag Ban

We at OkStraw are excited to announce that Delaware is the newest state to pass a plastic bag ban. Governor John Carney signed House Bill 130 into law on July 29th, which takes effect on January 1st, 2021. Governor Carney also signed in Senate Substitute 1 for Senate Bill 5. SB5 will increase fines for illegal dumping, and establish a Litter Investigation and Enforcement Fund. 

Delaware’s plastic bag ban is the result of Carney’s Keep DE Litter Free, and anti-pollution activists like Dee Durham. Durham is the co-founder of Plastic Free Delaware, and began her fight for a plastic bag ban over a decade ago. OkStraw Paper Straws would like to congratulate Delaware on its fight against plastic waste.

Plastic bags are the fourth most commonly found form of litter around the world

Plastic straws and plastic bags are extremely harmful to marine animals.

According to Durham, less than 10 percent of single-use plastic bags are recycled. The  rest end up in the landfill, on roads, or in waters. According to State Senator Stephanie Hansen, plastic bags are the fourth most commonly found form of litter around the world. Unlike paper bags and paper straws, plastic bags and plastic straws never go away. Once they enter the environment, they are extremely difficult or even impossible to remove. Delaware’s plastic bag ban is a great first step to mitigate this environmental disaster.

Activist Dee Dunham is exploring a plastic straw ban as the next step in her fight against plastic waste. As plastic straw ban and plastic bag bans often go hand-in-hand, this is a natural step to take. Switching from plastic straws to paper straws and bags is one of the easiest ways to lower plastic waste. With high quality paper straw offerings from companies like OkStraw, it’s even easier.

Many Delawareans are already making the switch before the plastic bag ban

On January 1st of 2021, Delawareans will join the other 55 percent of the world’s population, who live under a plastic bag ban. Many Delawareans are already making the switch before the plastic bag ban, going paper or reusable. Citizen participation shows promise for more changes. Delaware could be one step closer to moving away from plastic straws, and switching to more sustainable paper straws.

When the plastic bag ban goes into law, Delaware will join states like New York, Hawaii and California. If Delaware’s fight against plastic waste succeeds, the state could be the first to have a full plastic straw ban. For now, other states have only banned restaurants from handing out straws, unless requested. A full plastic straw ban could make Delaware a small state with a big impact on the Midatlantic region, and the rest of America. Should this happen, the future for the paper straw in its birth region looks bright.