Beyond Plastic

Environment America, PIRG and Environmental Action submit over 36k public comments calling on the federal government to reduce plastic pollution

A new proposed rule for federal purchasing should make it mandatory to reduce plastic.

Beyond plastic

Rich Carey | Shutterstock.com

As the biggest purchaser of goods and services in the world, the United States government could make a big dent in our plastic waste crisis. Unfortunately, the federal government’s new proposed rule on single-use plastics doesn’t require anybody to use less plastic. That’s a potential wasted opportunity.

Today, Environment America joined Environmental Action and PIRG in delivering 36,370 public comments calling on the federal government to require real reductions in single-use plastic products and stop adding tons of plastic waste to our landfills and environment. 

How big of a dent in plastic waste could the federal government make? A really big one.

The U.S. government spends $650 billion per year on consumer goods and services. The goods it purchases include a mountain of plastic products — the single-use plastic bags, utensils, straws, bottles, packaging and other plastic products purchased for use in government buildings and at official events. 

Tons of this plastic ends up in the trash — adding to the jaw-dropping 35 million tons every year, give or take a few tons.

All of this plastic is harming our communities and the planet. The federal government has a chance to help make a big reduction in plastic waste and pollution by making it mandatory to reduce plastic. We hope they don’t let this opportunity go to waste. 

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