Goodbye Waste! Disney Bans Single-Serve Plastic in Parks

disney world single-use plastic

As the hazardous effects of climate change threaten more and more people’s everyday reality, the focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, choosing more sustainably-made purchases, and recycling properly are all becoming necessities.

Walt Disney World Resort has not been idle on this front, and Disney is known for its conservation efforts — but now Disney is also making a big change that pushes its eco-friendly status to the next level!

Five Years Later…

A 10-year-old boy named Brayden Bittel started a petition in 2018 regarding Disney’s use of wasteful and harmful single-use plastic cup lids and straws, after seeing the lack of these items in the Animal Kingdom theme park.

Assorted Straws

Credit: Eater

Good, But Not Good Enough?

Disney World has finally embraced Bittel’s ethos, years later, and announced that these harmful products will no longer be available in the self-service sections of any Disney World quick-service dining establishments.

This ban on single-use plastics will begin on Monday, August 21 — but unfortunately, it is not airtight. Guests can supposedly still ask Cast Members for paper straws and lids, which means they’re still available at Walt Disney World Resort (just in an only-slightly-more-inconvenient way.)

Trash at Disney World

The Last Straw

Straws are known for ending up in the oceans and severely injuring marine life (such as these loggerhead sea turtles) — and even though a biodegradable paper straw might be better than a plastic straw, it is still better to avoid any single-use products whenever possible, whether or not they are biodegradable and compostable.

Disney World has been trying out several new innovations when it comes to recycling and trash disposal in recent years — even going so far as to recycle glass for horseback riding trails — so perhaps this ban is part of a bigger overall plan that will involve a solid removal of single-use straws and lids across the board!

Disney also has some edible (and flavorful) straws on offer for Disney World guests, as well!

drunk at Disney World

Credit: @duesiy

Do you think that Disney World is doing enough to do away with single-use lids and straws, or do you think that this ban should become a more strict regulation?

About Sharon

Sharon is a writer and animal lover from New England. Sharon's two main focuses in her work are Disney's correlations with pop culture and the significance of Disney princesses (which was the basis for her college thesis). When she's not writing about Disney, Sharon spends her time singing, dancing, and cavorting with woodland creatures!

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