Kelsey is a freelance writer based in Southern Virginia. She enjoys traveling with her family to destinations from national parks to amusement parks and loves sharing tips and stories from along the way.
On July 17, 2023, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) took a monumental step toward environmental sustainability by officially banning the sale of single-use plastic water bottles at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Van Nuys Airport (VNY).
As part of LA’s Green New Deal, the Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners unanimously passed the ban in June of 2021 to reduce plastic waste and promote eco-conscious practices at the airports.
The ban extends to all airport vendors, including restaurants, vending machines, and airport events. However, the use of plastic water bottles will still be permitted during in-flight services.
LAX and VNY have installed hydration stations throughout the airports to support travelers in adopting more sustainable practices. These stations offer a convenient way for passengers to refill their reusable water bottles, ensuring they stay hydrated without contributing to plastic waste.
In a statement from the airport, LAWA Chief Executive Officer Justin Erbacci said, “We encourage our guests to help us reach our goal of eliminating plastic waste at the airport by bringing a reusable water bottle and filling it up at one of our many hydration stations.”
In line with the ban, airport vendors now offer water in containers made from recyclable, sustainable materials such as glass or aluminum.
By making this switch, vendors aim to minimize their environmental impact and provide travelers with more eco-friendly options. This move is expected to reduce plastic waste and encourage a cultural shift toward prioritizing reusable and sustainable alternatives.
LAWA’s dedication to environmental sustainability goes beyond the single-use plastic water bottle ban. The airports have set ambitious goals for the future, aiming to achieve zero potable water consumption for non-potable uses by 2045.
LAX and VNY are also committed to achieving zero carbon emissions from their operations by 2045. This forward-looking plan aligns with global efforts to combat climate change.
As part of their sustainability vision, LAX and VNY also pledge to transition to 100% renewable electricity sources by 2045.
The ban on single-use plastic water bottles and the accompanying sustainability initiatives have garnered praise from environmental activists. Furthermore, the move sets a precedent for other airports worldwide to take similar steps in the global battle against plastic pollution and climate change.
As the ban takes effect, travelers are encouraged to embrace sustainable practices during their journeys. Bring reusable water bottles to the airport, use the hydration stations, and opt for beverages in recyclable containers when purchasing them.
With LAX and VNY taking significant strides towards sustainability, the future of air travel in Los Angeles looks promising, setting a high standard for environmental consciousness within the aviation industry.