80.6 F
Friday, July 30, 2021

New rules in Yucatán ban the use of polystyrene

Recent headlines

People of Homún awarded Lion Heart award for their fight against pig farms

The recognition comes as Homún continues to fight against pig farms which locals say produce dangerous levels of pollutants that seep into their groundwater. 

New archaeological discovery sheds light on a centuries-old conflict

Archaeologists in Piste, Yucatán, have discovered the foundations of two structures dating to the Caste War.

Yucatán’s COVID vaccination program reaches younger residents

Yucatán begins inoculating residents as young as 18. Photo: Courtesy Some Yucatán residents...
Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
Yucatán joins cities such as Mexico City and New York in banning polystyrene. Photo: File

Yucatán has announced a statewide polystyrene ban effective June 19.

The news comes on the heels of similar measures taken in December, intended to eliminate the use of plastic straws and some types of plastic bags. 

Harry Rodríguez Botello Fierro, Yucatán’s ecology commissioner, highlighted the importance of the polystyrene ban and suggested that the state would be moving forward with similar measures in the future. 

Known locally as “nieve seca” or “unicel,” polystyrene is an easily moldable and inexpensive synthetic material used around the world, mostly for packaging. 

Uses of polystyrene include food containers, disposable cutlery, lids and protective packaging for electronics. The popularity of the material combined with the fact that it is non-biodegradable has long caused alarm amongst environmentalists. 

“We will comply with the decision, but let me be frank, it’s not that easy to make the switch … we use polystyrene because it’s cheap. This decision is likely to force us to raise our prices a little,” said the manager of a popular restaurant in Mérida’s north, who preferred to not be identified.

Large chains, such as Dunkin’ Donuts and McDonald’s, have recently moved away from the use of polystyrene, opting instead for alternatives such as double-walled paper cups. 

Countries such as Zimbabwe and Costa Rica have already banned polystyrene.

“To be effective, the measure requires the support of citizens … to transform our consumption habits and strive towards more sustainable lifestyles,” said Greenpeace’s Ornela Garelli.

More news

Girls pawn their house to pay for mother’s funeral

Social media helped attract attention to the young sisters who sold their home to pay for their mother's funeral. Photo: Courtesy

Snack time: The best of Yucatán’s botanitas

While some of the snacks on offer in Yucatán are easily recognizable to newcomers, others may seem a little more exotic.

At 112, ‘Don Chep’ was Yucatán’s oldest man — or maybe not

Jorge Durán y Coral celebrated his 112th birthday earlier this year. Photo: Courtesy Family and friends said their...

New delays and ‘unforeseen’ rains delay the reopening of the paso deprimido

If you had been looking forward to zooming under Mérida’s Paso Deprimdio underpass this summer, we have some bad news.