Costa Rica is taking a stand against the plastic waste flooding our oceans and clogging up our landfills: the country is poised to become the first in the world to eliminate all single-use plastics. This isn’t just a ban on plastic bags or water bottles. Using a multi-prong approach, Costa Rica will eliminate plastic forks, lids and even coffee stirrers. And as if that wasn’t a lofty enough goal, they plan to do this by 2021.

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Plastic is one of the most dramatic problems that the environment is facing. There is so much plastic trash in the ocean that it is difficult to even comprehend, and we are constantly discovering more. By 2050, there could be more plastic in the ocean than fish. In Costa Rica, 4,000 tons of solid waste is produced every day, and 20 percent of that never makes it to a recycle center or landfill, ending up in the Costa Rican rivers, beaches and forests.

Related: Costa Rica ran almost entirely on renewables in 2016

Costa Rica has taken environmental protection seriously. The country plans to be carbon neutral by 2021, in part by ditching fossil fuels. They are also dedicated to restoring their forests and protecting wildlife.  In order to move away from single-use plastic, the country will utilize both public and private sectors to accomplish five actions. The country will offer incentives and issue requirements for suppliers, in addition to investing in research and development and other initiatives that will move it closer to its goals. It will also replace single-use products with innovations like cellulose acetate-based materials.

Via Costa Rica News

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