Sutton High News

The Student News Site of Sutton High School

Sutton High News

Sutton High News

Is Governor Healey’s Ban on Single-Use Plastic Reasonable?

Massachusetts Governor passes a single-use plastic ban on Mass government agencies.

Governor Healey signed an executive order on Thursday, September 21, 2023, that states Massachusetts government agencies can not legally purchase single-use plastic bottles. Is this ban reasonable?

What is a government state agency? These are organizations funded by the government, police and fire departments, department of labor, highway patrol, etc. So this ban isn’t reaching the masses.

But, on the other hand, should it be?

You wouldn’t want to give your infant a glass sippy cup, would you?

Plastic’s affect on our environment has been a hot topic for quite some time. More often than not plastic is not disposed of properly. This causes many issues on animal life and their ecosystems. The sad truth is that lots of natural beauty is disturbed by plastic–it won’t decay fast enough for it not to affect our lives. Beaches and parks are littered with different plastics, not only bottles. 

Governor Healey presenting the new ban on single-use plastic (

It takes 20-500 years for a single piece of plastic to naturally decay. That’s a long time! When we don’t recycle our bottles and containers they end up in landfills or, worse, our oceans. There are even large “islands” of plastic just floating around in the water known as the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch.” 

In reality, when you recycle plastic it happens in one of two ways. “Plastic can either be shredded into flakes or melt processed to form pellets before finally being molded into new products.” When melting the plastic it emits a gas that is not only harmful to the environment but also to humans and wildlife, causing health problems like, “cancer, immune diseases, and reproductive problems.”

Plastic was invented in 1907 so this everyday material has been a part of life for over a century. Taking this away is almost impossible but it is crucial for our society. The cons outweigh the pros, but I don’t think plastic will ever be eradicated from our livelihood.

What is a good alternative to plastic? Glass. But glass is easily broken and much more expensive than plastic. The convenience of plastic is unmatchable. It’s extremely durable and safer. You wouldn’t want to give your infant a glass sippy cup, would you? They could break it and hurt themselves and the constant replacement is a fortune. 

Single-use water bottles, how convenient! (Getty Images)

Governor Healey is trying her best to come at this correctly, and I believe she is. Starting small with things like water bottles is a smart start. But bottles are a fraction of the overall issue. I understand she is trying her best to stop this overuse of plastic but it has been a part of everyday life for so long that it is relatively impossible to stop its usage.

Ethically this ban is a great idea but in reality, it’s not reasonable. To get this message across it should be done nationwide, at this large scale you can monitor the usage because no one will have access. Having this new rule only in Massachusetts allows people to find their way around it. 

The problem isn’t that people just love plastic, but it’s convenient and cheap, Americans love the convenience of things in their busy lives so they resort to plastic.

So, while banning it in government agencies is a start, it is a long long ways from the finish line.

Story continues below advertisement
View Comments (1)
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Abrielle Choma
Abrielle Choma, Staff Reporter
I am a senior at Sutton High School. My favorite color is green and I am on the Sutton High Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field teams. I love to ski and spend time with my friends and family.

Comments (1)

All Sutton High News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • T

    Ted McCarthyOct 14, 2023 at 7:59 am

    Hi Abi –

    I actually had no idea about this order. I’m wondering if there is a carve out for certain agencies as we (the school) are still allowed to purchase plastic water bottles.