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Environment and Energy

UPDATE: Pismo Beach polystyrene ban moves one step closer to becoming ordinance

Flickr member: Kai Hendry

UDPATE: Wednesday, November 18, 2015 at 5:21 p.m.

Pismo Beach is one step closer to banning expanded polystyrene—known by its brand name styrofoam—from being used by restaurants and other food purveyors. 

The City Council voted 5-0 Tuesday night to accept the ordinance as introduced at its meeting. One more public hearing and vote needs to take place on December 15 in order for it to be adopted.

Seven members of the community spoke last night in support of the ban, while nobody spoke in opposition.

Original Story

Pismo Beach city leaders will hear public comment Tuesday night regarding a proposed expanded polystyrene ban known in some cases under the trade name Styrofoam.

The move would keep restaurants and other food purveyors from using disposable food containers made with the synthetic compound.


This is the first of two public meetings on the topic, with the other slated for mid-December.

Interim Community Development Director Michael Draze prepared the report being presented to the City Council. He said timing the possible passage of the ordinance around the holidays was calculated.

"We feel that if this thing gets approved, and it actually gets approved in December, the businesses would have the month of December and early parts of January to get rid of their existing inventory before we have the ordinance go into effect in January," said Draze.

San Luis Obispo's expanded polystyrene ban was used as a model for the Pismo version, but Draze said several changes were made.

Like San Luis Obispo, restaurants will have an option to apply for an exemption based on hardship, but Draze said many locations have already made the switch.

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