On Monday 3/15, along with our partners at Environment Oregon and Oceana, we hosted a great “Rise Above Plastic Pollution Day” virtual rally. It was so inspiring to hear from community leaders about their work to reduce plastic pollution in Oregon. If you weren’t able to make it, you can find the video of the event here.

The event focused on our 2021 legislative priorities that Charlie Plybon outlined in this blog post back in January. The problem is that NONE of these bills have been scheduled for a hearing. If they are not scheduled, there is no chance of them passing.

That makes us wonder, is the legislature actually serious about taking action against plastic pollution?

That’s why we need YOU to ask that hearings be scheduled and to hold legislators accountable for what they are NOT doing. They don’t need to hear that plastic pollution is harmful. They already know that. What they need to hear is that you expect them to do something about it.

Many people have asked for more information about how best to make your voice heard on plastic pollution. We are coming up against some key deadlines in the Oregon legislature to get our bills scheduled for a hearing (March 19th & April 13th). Please let the members of the House Committee on Energy and Environment know that you care about reducing plastic pollution and would like any/all of these bills to be scheduled for a hearing:

  • Polystyrene (Foam) Foodware (HB 2617)
  • Comprehensive Single Use Foodware (HB 2365)
  • No Chemical Recycling – (HB 2811)

Feel free to contact any members, but it is of particular importance to call the Chair. Emails are okay, but phone calls really make an impact! Make sure to call by THIS THURSDAY 3/18.

Here is a script template:

“Hi my name is X and I’m the owner of X business in X town. I’m calling today about my ongoing concerns with plastic pollution and generally what I’m seeing as a business owner (teacher, parent, etc.) and within my community. I understand that the House Energy and Environment Committee has not scheduled any of these plastic policy bills, such as HB 2617 which addresses polystyrene (foam) foodware. [Insert plastic pollution fact/concern]. While we’ve been taking small steps as a business owner, we really need to be taking statewide action on this issue and getting rid of polystyrene to-go is an easy business and environmental decision. Can we count on the Representative to get this scheduled before the deadline this Friday?”

We are also working to get strong plastic reduction goals included in Senate Bill 582-1, which is a bill to modernize Oregon’s recycling system and establish a producer responsibility program for packaging and paper products. We think the bill is a good start, but want it to include strong waste reduction goals– after all, it’s “Reduce” first!

If you agree, please let the members of the Senate Committee on Energy and Environment know:

In the future, will it be sand in your hands….or plastic?