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City Council President Wants to Ban Styrofoam Cups in Boston

Boston City Council President Stephen Murphy originally called for a ban on styrofoam cups in 2009, but feels there's more support of it in 2012.

The styrofoam cups that are being used today will live longer than the man who would like to ban them in Beantown - Boston City Council President Stephen Murphy.

At a recent Boston City Council meeting, Murphy reintroduced an order from 2009, calling for a citywide ban on styrofoam cups.

"The styrofoam is nonbiodegradable and lasts for hundreds and hundreds of years in landfills," said Murphy, who reminded his peers that 10 of them supported the order in 2009 (with the other three not being on the council). 

Murphy said more than 111 municipalities have banned them across the country, and that locally, Brookline is debating a ban now. "It’s sound public policy. (I'm) just asking for it to go to the appropriate committee and seeing if we can get behind it in the city."

Here are statistics on styrofoam from Livestrong.com, including: 

  • Styrofoam and Styrofoam products fill up 30 percent of our landfill space, and landfills are quickly becoming full.
  • A Recycling Revolution reports that packaging material makes up one-third of an average dump.

The order was referred to the Committee on Environment and Human Rights.

MarkBoston September 29, 2012 at 07:27 PM
I support this ban !
Robyn Ochs September 30, 2012 at 01:12 PM
I support this ban too. In this world where business decisions are too-often driven by short term gain and quarterly profit reports, we humans would be wise to consider the long-term environmental impact of our choices. Oren Lyons, Chief of the Onondaga Nation, wrote: "We are looking ahead, as is one of the first mandates given us as chiefs, to make sure and to make every decision that we make relate to the welfare and well-being of the seventh generation to come."
yogasong September 30, 2012 at 02:37 PM
I support this ban. There's plenty of other alternatives now so that can't be an excuse any longer.
Peter R. Lee September 30, 2012 at 02:39 PM
I support this ban. The trouble is that so many things are made of Styrofoam how can an ordinance be fashioned that would work. Banning the cups would be a good start!
William Brokhof September 30, 2012 at 03:48 PM
It's about time. Not only do I support it, I applaud it. Moreover, Duncan Donuts should have to pay a massive reparation for the damage they have done. I don't know how the CEO of DD could walk down the street seeing the amounts of refuse his company causes - and feel like he's doing a good job. Shame on you.
Stephanie B September 30, 2012 at 04:35 PM
YES YES AND YES!!!! About time! Then DD will finally have to change its evil ways!!
E.M. Steiner October 01, 2012 at 04:20 PM
Only one problem. The so-called facts supporting this ban are WRONG. Unless, that is, you consider LivingStrong.com to be a better source than, let's say the US Environmental Protection Agency. EPA has conducted recent studies that show polystyrene foam is less than 1% of the total municipal solid waste stream - both by weight and volume. 29% is a pretty huge discrepancy. And oddly, regarding adverse health effects, LivingStrong.com doesn't cite any scientific findings but simply provides speculative comment. Think again. Does anyone know what the environmental or health impacts for alternative materials would be? Did anyone check? Has a realistic projection of the total environmental improvement that would theorectically be achieved been looked into? Environmental stewardship demands that these questions be addressed in a serious and concerted manner. Otherwise, the decision making process is meaningless and in this case based on grossly incorrect information.
E.M. Steiner October 01, 2012 at 04:29 PM
Really??! Shame on the citizens in your community for littering. I live in the Washington, DC area with lots of Dunkin Donuts locations and we don't have this problem.
Scott October 01, 2012 at 07:17 PM
LOL, yeah there is ZERO litter in DC.
Scott October 01, 2012 at 07:19 PM
This message has been approved by the Styrofoam lobby, keeping DC litter free.

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