Camden County freeholders approved a ban on single-use plastics Thursday, including bags, straws, utensils and other items at county facilities and events, effective Jan. 1, 2020.
Exceptions are made for bags used for a variety of food items, including meat, fish, bakery goods, unpackaged bulk produce and prepared foods for delivery, as well as for “flowers, potted plants or other items where dampness may be an issue.”
“If Camden County can ban plastic, then every other county and town in New Jersey can do it. Plastic has become a menace to our environment and is a public health issue and it is important that cities, towns, and businesses are taking steps to reduce their plastic input and output,” said Jeff Tittel, director of the New Jersey Sierra Club in a statement.
According to a release from the New Jersey Sierra Club, Rutgers scientists have found densities of about 28,000 to more than three million plastic particles per square kilometer in samples from the Passaic and Raritan River; and beach sweeps along the shore have found more than 80 percent of their trash is plastic.
Camden County joins towns like Paramus, Bayonne, Lambertville, Avalon, Belmar, Hoboken, Jersey City and Teaneck in passing plastic bag ordinances.