by Laura Oergel
The Ventura County chapter of the Surfrider Foundation started the Plastic Free Ventura campaign in the summer of 2018. Led by core volunteer Juli Marciel, she reviewed 120 examples of current single use plastic reduction ordinances in the state of California, ending up writing the draft proposal in the fall of 2018. Juli and her campaign team have documented the dangers of plastic and Styrofoam and during 2019 presented the draft to all 7 of the city of Ventura councilmembers individually to answer any questions and to discuss how to move forward in the most favorable way. To date, 7000 petition postcards have been signed by community members and 70 food establishments have signed a letter of support for the ordinance. The City of Ventura’s draft EPS foam ban ordinance is the first model in Ventura County.
The original single use plastic ban ordinance the PFV campaign drafted was strict. It went from a full single use plastic reduction ordinance to an eps ban ordinance in the hopes that this first ordinance would pass easier and pave the way for the full ban, as well as a more aggressive EPS foam ban that would include retail stores.
Juli welcomes interest from other cities and hopes Ventura County cities like Oxnard, Pt. Hueneme and Camarillo walk beside Ventura and adopt their own ordinances. Please contact her if your city is interested at RAP@ventura.surfrider.org.
All of the members of the PFV campaign are like-minded, working together for a common goal and purpose. They are Juli Marciel, Danielle Rose, Cole McLaughlin, Bill Hickman, Kathy Bremmer, Scott Fish, Andrew Fish, Tatum Luoma and John Stith. Many other volunteers also contributed to get to this point. The research was done, the community support was documented, and this is a great step within the city for environmental change.
For firther information https://ventura.surfrider.org/plastic-free-ventura-update-thank-you-city-council/