Kauai Chapter

Styrofoam Free Kauai


The Issue:

On July 8, the County of Kauai will hear testimony on Bill No. 2775 – a ban on polystyrene (commonly known as Styrofoam). We of course strongly support this Bill AND believe we can do more by expanding it to include ALL disposable plastic food containers. This is where we need your help.

Surfrider Kauai’s Position & How You Can Provide Testimony!

Polystyrene and other plastics make up a large percentage of ocean debris -harming marine life and delicate ecosystems. We strongly support Bill No. 2775, but want to encourage the County to expand the ban to include ALL plastic, non-compostable food service containers. This will prevent restaurants and grocery stores from simply going from polystyrene to another form of plastic.

This is where you come in – The county needs to hear testimony from as many of us as possible!

  1. Email: email your testimony to counciltestimony@kauai.gov. Reference Bill No. 2775, and send no later than Tuesday, July 7. (Sample email testimony below).
  2. Testimony: Send a request to testify “in person” via Zoom – to cokcouncil@kauai.gov (or call 808-241-4188) – no later than 7 a.m. on July 8th. Include your name, phone, email and refer to Zoom Testimony Request for Bill 2775. Please make sure you download Zoom prior to the meeting. After oral testimony, members of the public can continue watching the meeting via live stream at www.kauai.gov/webcastmeetings.

Sample Email Testimony:

For those of you who may want a little help getting started, here’s a sample email that you’re welcome to use or adapt for your written testimony.

To: counciltestimony@kauai.gov
Subject: Testimony on Bill No. 2775

Dear Council Members,

I’m writing to provide testimony for Bill No. 2775, the Kauai ban on Polystyrene which you’ll be considering on July 8. I want to offer strong support for this important Bill. I’m concerned, however, that it doesn’t go far enough, and encourage the Council to expand the Bill to include ALL disposable plastic food service containers.

– Plastic food service containers are the number 1 source of marine pollution.
– These items are not biodegradable and can take hundreds of years to deteriorate in the environment or landfills.
– Polystyrenes and other plastics are made from petroleum, which is a non-renewable, non-sustainable resource.
– Cost-effective alternatives are readily available. Other Hawaii counties that have implemented similar bans have not experienced catastrophic cost increases for takeout and other items requiring food service containers.
– And, a recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that viable Covid-19 virus lasts up to 3 times longer on plastic surfaces than on cardboard – so they are more dangerous to bring into the home during the pandemic.

I’m concerned that if only Polystyrenes are banned, restaurants and grocery stores will simply switch to another form of plastic. So please accept this email as my testimony to support AND expand Bill No. 2775 to include ALL disposable plastic food service items.

Insert Your Name and Address

Bill No. 2775 Summary:

Bill No. 2775 would prohibit the sale and use of polystyrene foam food service containers effective January 1, 2021. There are exemptions established for a) foods packaged outside of Kauai County; b) raw or butchered meats, poultry, fish, and eggs, except if provided for consumption without further food preparation – sashimi or poke, for example; c) unique situations with no alternative to polystyrene foam food service containers as approved by the Director; and d) official emergency situations. Bill No. 2775 also establishes an escalating fine schedule for each separate violation, and a separate fine schedule for commercial or non-commercial special events. Testimony will be heard in committee on July 8th. If it passes out of committee, it will go to the Council for a final vote the following week.