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building a movement to end plastic pollution

Beyond Plastics and 39 other organizations and businesses are calling on the Port Authority of NY and NJ to follow San Francisco International (SFO) Airport’s lead and ban the sale of single-use plastic water bottles at JFK, Newark, LaGuardia and Stewart airports as well as the bus stations under its purview. Instead, we urge the Port Authority to install adequate water fountains and filling stations to meet the needs of staff and travelers.

A spokesperson for SFO told CBS News that each guest that comes through the airport produces roughly half a pound of trash and that vendors had been selling around 10,000 bottles of water daily. These plastic water bottles represent a significant source of plastic trash, the vast majority of which will never be recycled. Instead, the bottles will make their way into our landfills, gutters, rivers, streams, lakes and oceans where they will break into smaller and smaller pieces and end up killing wildlife and entering our water and food supply.

Take Action

Please join us in urging the Port Authority to make this commonsense change as soon as possible.

One of the new water filling stations at San Francisco International Airport.

Why Is This Change Necessary?

With the exception of areas where the tap water is unsafe to drink, bottled water is completely unnecessary. Fortunately, New York and New Jersey have excellent tap water.

Bottled water is also expensive, wasteful, and harmful to our environment and potentially also to our health as studies show it contains significantly higher levels of microplastics particles than tap water does.

One million plastic bottles are bought around the world every minute; by 2021, more than half a trillion plastic bottles will be sold annually. At best, less than one third of these plastic bottles will be recycled, the remainder will be buried, burned, or end up in our rivers and oceans where they will persist for hundreds of years, making their way into the food chain, soil, and water. Plastic bottles and bottle caps consistently rank in the top ten most collected plastic trash items in the annual September beach cleanups conducted in more than 100 countries.

Bottled water also comes with a heavy carbon footprint and poses a significant danger to the communities from which it is sourced.

For more information on why this policy change is urgently needed, please read the letter below that we delivered to Director Rick Cotton of the Port Authority on December 10, 2019.


Download the letter we sent to the Port Authority.

If you represent an organization or a business and would like to add your name as a signatory, please fill out this form.

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