In an effort to work toward zero waste goals and address community concerns for harmful plastics and litter in our city and waterways, City Council took an early step in passing an ordinance regulating single-use plastic straws city-wide and expanded polystyrene (EPS aka Styrofoam) on city rights-of-way. The ordinance was approved in December 2018, and the formal transition period began January 2019. View the Plastic Straws and Expanded Polystyrene - Final Ordinance.
2019 is the year for transitioning away from these single-use plastic products before the regulations will be fully enforced. This transition period is to help businesses reduce their plastics while communicating with the City on how to provide the most effective assistance.
Polylactic acid (PLA) straws are not allowed as an alternative under St. Petersburg’s new regulations. PLA is considered a type of thermoplastic and is characteristic of corn-based substitutes. Despite them being biodegradable in certain environments, they are still plastic.
Schedule Time with Staff to Learn More about Minimizing Plastics in St. Pete!
To schedule a phone call, meeting, staff training, or presentation on the new regulations, complete a request form.
Each business will be visited from City Staff and/or our partner volunteer organization Suncoast Rise Above Plastics regardless of this meeting request. You can submit this form multiple times for additional meeting requests.
Eco-friendly Business Toolkit: Minimizing Plastics
The City is currently building an Eco-Friendly Business Toolkit to assist businesses and customers with this transition. The first toolkit module is available below and outlines why regulating single-use plastics is necessary, summarized ordinance information and suggested next steps for businesses. A folder of related materials is available (second link) as part of the toolkit and includes files for signage, stickers, employee tips and more.
Toolkit & Related Files
- Eco-friendly Business Toolkit: Minimizing Plastics (digital multi-page PDF)
- Eco-friendly Business Toolkit: Minimizing Plastics (all materials .zip)
The City will continue to update this toolkit to include designed files for materials to be used by businesses and customers. To provide suggestions for desired materials, fill out the Eco-friendly Business Toolkit: Minimizing Plastics request form.
While the City of St. Petersburg cannot make recommendations on plastic-free and expanded polystyrene-free product lines or suppliers who carry them, our partner volunteer organization is putting together some community-sourced lists that may be helpful as reference while you explore your options. Visit their page here for more information: Suncoast Rise Above Plastics – Suppliers of Alternative Materials.