Ben Allen

California State Senator representing the 26th district, Westside, Hollywood and the South Bay communities of Los Angeles County.

California State Senator representing the 26th district, Westside, Hollywood and the South Bay communities of Los Angeles County.

Ben Allen on KCRW

Plastic breaks up into smaller pieces, and millions of tons of it end up in the oceans every year. It’s in the food chain, including the food people eat.

‘This issue isn’t going away’: Senator Ben Allen on his bill to reduce plastic waste

Plastic breaks up into smaller pieces, and millions of tons of it end up in the oceans every year. It’s in the food chain, including the food people eat.

from Greater LA

Senate Bill 54,    introduced by State Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica), aimed to eliminate three-quarters of single-use, or disposable, plastic bags and containers in the next 10…

Why California’s single-use plastic bill is in political limbo

Senate Bill 54, introduced by State Senator Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica), aimed to eliminate three-quarters of single-use, or disposable, plastic bags and containers in the next 10…

from Greater LA

“We can’t recycle our way out of this crisis.”  That’s according to California’s Democratic State Senator Ben Allen-- just one of many politicians around the country proposing to ban all straws, bags and other single-use plastics. 

At the overwhelmed Recycling Center in Burbank, California, Kreigh Hample says, “Our packaging has gone up exponentially in just the last few decades… it’s a sad story in the way we eat, the way we dispose of things and the way that we’re living.” 

A throwaway culture may be convenient, but the costs include cleaning it up with taxpayer money--not to mention worldwide pollution. 

China now requires recycled products so pure that the bottom’s gone out of the market, but the plastics industry is bigger than ever.  Former EPA official Judith Judith Enck says half the world’s plastics have been produced in the past 13 years.  One new process has developed from coal fracking, and development is being encouraged by President Trump with support from the fossil fuel industry.  

But just 9% of the  plastic produced is getting recycled.  Some goes to landfills, but the rest turns into worldwide pollution.  Images of plastic waste floating by the acre in the Pacific Ocean are all too familiar; microplastics are turning up from the depths of the seas to the remotest parts of the Arctic.  

In Texas and other states, it’s illegal to ban plastic products.  But, in Sacramento, Allen says it’s time to hold the plastics industry accountable.  California is big enough to influence the nation’s economy, so his efforts are being scrutinized by politicians and advocates around the country.

The high cost of cheap plastics

“We can’t recycle our way out of this crisis.” That’s according to California’s Democratic State Senator Ben Allen-- just one of many politicians around the country proposing to ban all straws, bags and other single-use plastics. At the overwhelmed Recycling Center in Burbank, California, Kreigh Hample says, “Our packaging has gone up exponentially in just the last few decades… it’s a sad story in the way we eat, the way we dispose of things and the way that we’re living.” A throwaway culture may be convenient, but the costs include cleaning it up with taxpayer money--not to mention worldwide pollution. China now requires recycled products so pure that the bottom’s gone out of the market, but the plastics industry is bigger than ever. Former EPA official Judith Judith Enck says half the world’s plastics have been produced in the past 13 years. One new process has developed from coal fracking, and development is being encouraged by President Trump with support from the fossil fuel industry. But just 9% of the plastic produced is getting recycled. Some goes to landfills, but the rest turns into worldwide pollution. Images of plastic waste floating by the acre in the Pacific Ocean are all too familiar; microplastics are turning up from the depths of the seas to the remotest parts of the Arctic. In Texas and other states, it’s illegal to ban plastic products. But, in Sacramento, Allen says it’s time to hold the plastics industry accountable. California is big enough to influence the nation’s economy, so his efforts are being scrutinized by politicians and advocates around the country.

from To the Point

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