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Interior phasing out plastic water bottles at national parks

Plastics National Parks
Posted at 12:03 PM, Jun 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-08 15:24:13-04

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Interior Department says it will phase out sales of plastic water bottles and other single-use products at national parks and on other public lands over the next decade, targeting a major source of U.S. pollution.

An order issued by Interior Secretary Deb Haaland on Wednesday calls for the department to reduce the purchase, sale and distribution of single-use plastic products and packaging on 480 million acres of federally managed lands, with a goal of phasing out the products by 2032.

"Plastics, including unnecessary and easily substituted single-use plastic products, are devastating fish and wildlife around the world," the order says.

The order directs the department to identify alternatives to single-use plastics, such as compostable or biodegradable materials or 100% recycled materials. It also says the department must "identify opportunities to shift public behavior to reduce single-use plastic products, such as installing additional water fountains and reusable water bottle filling stations."

The U.S. is one of the world's largest producers of plastic waste, according to the Interior Department.