Luskin Center for Innovation on Combating Plastic Waste

The Los Angeles Times and Los Angeles magazine cited findings from a recent report by the UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation (LCI) on the devastating impact of single-use plastics. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the issue of single-use plastic as many restaurants have transitioned to takeout and delivery services, which often include utensils, napkins and condiment packets. In 2019, L.A. County commissioned LCI to investigate the impact of single-use plastic on waste streams. The report, released in February, showed a significant presence, indicating that this type of plastic is not being recycled. Reusable L.A. is a coalition of local organizations that recently launched the #SkiptheStuff campaign, which aims to create legislation requiring restaurants and delivery services to provide plastic straws, utensils and napkins only upon request instead of including them automatically. This week, the city of Los Angeles set this type of ordinance in motion with the aim of putting it into effect by Earth Day, April 22.

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