A legal bill in the state of California, in the United States, proposes penalizing restaurants that give out straws without clients’ request. If it passes, the law would prescribe a fine of up to 1000 dollars and up to six months in jail for the establishment’s owner or employees.

The goal is to decrease the use of plastic and raise awareness among the population. Straws take up to 500 years to decompose and cause environmental problems. Once they get to the ocean, for example, they are mistaken for food and ingested by marine animals that often do not hold up and die.

According to the movement The Last Plastic Straw, it is estimated that Americans use close to 500 million straws per day. There are other options such as edible and biodegradable straws. All are made from bovine gelatin. Stainless steel and glass are also reusable materials that can be used for straws.

QUESTIONS – level 3

1. Why is the use of plastic straws a concern?

a. They produce non-recyclable trash.
b. Straws take up to 500 years to decompose.
c. Straws impact marine life.
d. Bovine gelatin is bad for marine life.

2. Do we really need to use straws? Or is this a habit that needs to be revisited?

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