Cal State LA bans plastic bags and straws on campus

EL SERENO, Calif. (KABC) -- Starting this week, California State University, Los Angeles has banned some plastic items on campus for sustainability.

"At first I didn't believe it when they were saying it," Lusine Aleksanian, a Cal State LA student, said.

Food vendors on campus will no longer offer plastic bags or straws. Instead, alternatives like paper bags and straws will be offered.

"But now that I don't see any plastic, I'm happy," Aleksanian said.

University officials say this is, "a major step in an ambitious initiative to become a zero-waste university."

"They were like, 'you want a bag?' but I was waiting for a plastic bag," Karina Sixto, a Cal State LA student, said when she bought lunch at the cafeteria. "I was surprised about the straws too."

The ban is part of a new California State University system policy. By 2023, all 23 CSU campuses will be plastic-free.

"I think it's amazing, especially for the environment," J.P. Sanchez, a Cal State LA student, said. "So much plastic in our oceans, it's really sad to see."

Styrofoam food containers will be gone by 2021 and single-use plastic water bottles in 2023.

"I'm happy the school made that change, because I feel the students don't want to take that responsibility." Aleksanian said. "But, when the change is happening you have no choice but to adjust."
Copyright © 2019 KABC-TV. All Rights Reserved.