Photo: Blue Water Baltimore
After heavy storms like those seen in Baltimore in recent days, trash—including non-biodegradable foam containers—flood the city’s creeks, streams and Inner Harbor.
A new bill, sponsored by District 1 Councilman James Kraft and passed out of committee this week, would ban foam cups and containers from local carryout restaurants.
“There’s been various surveys done, but it’s been shown to be about 20 and 30 percent of the total litter that ends up in the harbor,” Baltimore Harbor waterkeeper Tina Meyers told WJZ. Styrofoam’s been shown to last over hundreds of years, Meyers added.
The foam polystyrene—“Styrofoam” is a registered trademark of the Dow Chemical Company—ban proposal is expected to go before the full City Council for a vote Monday.
Baltimore may also soon follow in the steps of Montgomery County and Washington D.C. and enact legislation that would impose a fee on disposable plastic and paper bags handed out by retailers.
District 2 City Councilman Brandon Scott introduced legislation Monday, co-sponsored by Kraft, that would require retailers, including grocery and convenience stores, to charge customers 10 cents for paper and plastic bags.
In a statement introducing the legislation, Scott noted the impact similar legislation in D.C. has had on cleaning up the Anacostia River.
Kraft, at a recent Healthy Harbor initiative press conference, said that he expects the City Council to pass both measures.