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Wilmington proposes resolution encouraging, but not requiring, businesses to be environmentally conscious

Sonoco Recycling

Wilmington voted in green energy goals earlier this year, with some “low hanging fruit” policies outlined as early steps. Those include a requirement for electric vehicle charging stations in all new city construction, requiring any new vehicles purchased by the city to be hybrid or electric vehicles, and fostering a bike and pedestrian friendly culture. Each of those policies will require a separate resolution, however.

Wilmington City Council is set to promote an environmentally-friendly program at the council meeting Tuesday evening.

The program designates certain businesses as Ocean-Friendly Establishments — those which make a promise to avoid plastic waste and replace single-use plastics with compostable alternatives. Numerous businesses in Wilmington and the surrounding communities have already made that pledge. The first was Blockade Runner Resort in Wrightsville Beach back in 2015.

The city’s resolution encourages businesses to become Ocean Friendly Establishments. It also encourages citizens to use fewer single-use plastics, to recycle single-use plastics, like plastic bags, and for the city staff to reduce their use as well. The resolution doesn’t go any farther than encouragement, however.

It is possible to recycle plastic bags and other plastic films, but can’t be done through the city’s home recycling program. Plastic bags are notorious for gumming up the works. However, many area grocery stores will recycle plastic bags, including various Wilmington locations of Food Lion, Harris Teeter, Lowes, Target, and Wal-Mart.

Kelly Kenoyer is an Oregonian transplant new to the East Coast. She attended University of Oregon’s School of Journalism as an undergraduate, and later received a Master’s in Journalism from University of Missouri- Columbia. Contact her on Twitter @Kelly_Kenoyer or by email: KKenoyer@whqr.org.