There’s a big loophole in the new SFO plastic water bottle ban

Published 9:34 am PDT, Tuesday, August 20, 2019

San Francisco International Airport made headlines this month with its new ban on public water bottles — a step towards its goal of becoming the first zero waste airport in the world. However, with the ban going into effect on Aug. 20, there’s one big loophole: plastic water bottles larger than one liter can still be sold.

As confirmed on the SFO website, “This policy covers drinking water in a sealed box, bag, can, bottle or other container intended mainly for single-service use and having a capacity of 1 liter or less.”

Perhaps a more accurate name for the policy would be the Tiny Plastic Water Bottle Ban.

MORE INFO: SFO bans sale of water in plastic bottles

The plastic ban also does not apply to flavored beverages, including sodas, teas, and juices, so travelers can still get their pre-flight seltzer fix. It applies to restaurants, cafes, and vending machines at the airport — but not beverages served on the plane.

While SFO fliers can still load up on giant plastic water bottles, if they’re looking for a more manageable size they’ll have to purchase a single-use water bottle in recyclable aluminum, recyclable glass, or compostable packaging — or, just bring a reusable bottle. These can be refilled at any of SFO’s approximately 100 hydration stations.

RELATED: All your coffee options at San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

The airport hopes to achieve zero waste going to landfill by 2021, so expect more new environmentally friendly changes in the near future.

Madeline Wells is an SFGate editorial assistant. Email: madeline.wells@sfgate.com | Twitter: @madwells22

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/SFO-plastic-water-bottle-ban-no-waste-airport-14363779.php.

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