The Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners Thursday unanimously approved a plan to phase out single-use plastic water bottles at LAX and the Van Nuys Airport.
“L.A.’s Green New Deal is about taking bold action now to fight climate change, and phasing out plastic bottles at LAX is an important step we can take toward that goal,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “I applaud LAWA for making this change, and look forward to continuing the push to make our airport a model for sustainable economic growth.”
Businesses with lease or concession agreements to operate restaurants, stores and lounges at the airports must substitute single-use plastic water bottles with bottles made from more sustainable materials, like recyclable aluminum, glass or compostable material. The policy also applies to vending machines and events at the airport, but bottled water served onboard airplanes is exempt.
The policy goes into effect immediately for new lease, concessions and operating agreements, and businesses with current leases have until June 30, 2023 to comply with the change. During the two-year period, businesses can use up their plastic water bottle supply and modify their purchasing contracts.
“The Board of Airport Commissioners is proud to take action to phase out single-use water bottles from LAX and VNY, simultaneously addressing climate change and taking a major step forward on LAWA’s waste-reduction goals,” said Board of Airport Commissioners President Sean Burton.
“Coupled with our installation of dozens of water bottle refilling stations throughout LAX, as well as allowing for water sales in cartons or recycled aluminum cans, our passengers can remain hydrated even as we create more sustainable airports.”
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will install 60 new hydration stations through LAX’s terminals to help passengers adapt to the new policy and have convenient access to drinking water.
“Eliminating single-use plastic water bottles is the right thing to do for our airports, our communities and our environment,” said Justin Erbacci, CEO of LAWA. “We thank L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti for leading the city’s vision for a better, more sustainable future and our Board of Airport Commissioners for taking action to achieve zero waste at our airports by 2045.”
As part of LAWA’s Sustainability Action Plan, LAX and Van Nuys Airport is also working to stop potable water consumption for non-potable uses, eliminate carbon emissions and use 100% renewable electricity and achieve zero waste by 2045.