Disney to ditch plastic straws, stirrers by 2019

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FILE- In this Jan. 31, 2017, file photo, cars travel one of the roads leading to Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. A regional director of the National Labor Relations Board last week ruled that about 60 drivers who pick up Disney World guests using the Lyft app can be represented by the […]

ORLANDO (WFLA) – The Walt Disney Company said Thursday that it will eliminate single-use plastic straws and plastic stirrers from most of its parks by mid-2019, joining a growing number of businesses that are ditching plastic straws in an effort to reduce plastic waste polluting our oceans.

All parks except Disney Tokyo are included in this plan, which will amount to a reduction of more than 175 million straws and 13 million stirrers annually, according to ABC News.

Disney said it also plans to reduce the number of single-use plastic shopping bags offered in its parks and cruise ships, giving guests the option to purchase reusable bags instead.

The company is one of an increasing number of businesses and entities that have joined the war against plastic straws.

Earlier this year, Starbucks announced it planned to phase out plastic straws by 2020 and McDonald’s said it would ban plastic straws in its UK and Ireland restaurants. Alaska Airlines will be the first airline to ditch plastic straws and stirrers after a Girl Scout “stirred them into action” by pointing out the negative environmental impact of plastic straws.  And at the beginning of this month, Seattle became the largest U.S. city to ban plastic straws.

“Eliminating plastic straws and other plastic items are meaningful steps in our long-standing commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Bob Chapek, Chairman, Disney Parks, Experiences, and Consumer Products. “These new global efforts help reduce our environmental footprint, and advance our long-term sustainability goals.”

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