WAILUKU, Hawaii — Officials in Maui County are considering banning polystyrene containers used by restaurants for takeout food with stiff fines for businesses that don’t comply.

The containers would be prohibited if the Maui County Council approves the ban, The Maui News (http://bit.ly/2qTbtad ) reported Tuesday.

Supporters who attended a council meeting Monday about the proposed ban said it is a positive step toward protecting the environment. Others said alternatives to the containers are costly.

“Passing the styrene ban is not sustainable,” said Marilyn Jorgensen of CJ’s Deli & Diner. “All the economic burden is going to be placed on the food service industry.”

Takeout food containers to replace polystyrene would cost three times more, Jorgensen said.

Ban supporter Lauren Blickley said the prohibition would help educate citizens about the importance of protecting the environment, and cited a county ban on plastic shopping bags as an example for why the polystyrene ban would work.

“We have learned from and seen firsthand the success of our plastic bag bill,” Blickley said. “We’ve seen these types of bills work. It does go hand and hand with education.”

County councilors made amendments to the measure Tuesday, which forced the final vote to be pushed back to May 18. If it passes, violators could be fined as much as $1,000 per day.


Information from: The Maui News, http://www.mauinews.com