The Huntington Beach City Council voted to ban single-use plastic bags within city limits. With its vote, Huntington Beach became the 70th local government in California to take action against plastic bag pollution. Over seven million Californians, nearly one out of every five people residing in the state, now live in a community that has approved a single-use plastic bag ban.
"This important step forward for Huntington Beach shows yet again that local communities can achieve lasting victories for ocean and environmental health," said Nathan Weaver of Environment California. "We continue to build more and more momentum to keep plastic out of the Pacific. Every week, cities, towns, counties and others are working to ban single-use plastic bags that pollute our oceans."
Plastic bags are a direct threat to wildlife -- like the Pacific leatherback sea turtle -- that mistake them for food. One in three leatherback sea turtles have plastic in their stomachs, according to research published in 2009. The bags are also one of the
four most common litter items on California's beaches, according to Ocean Conservancy's annual beach cleanup data.
"Nothing we use for a few minutes should pollute our ocean for hundreds of years," said Weaver.