Healey orders government-wide ban on single-use plastic bottles

Massachusetts will be the first state in the country to enact such legislation affecting state agencies.

The state will also be looking to establish additional biodiversity targets that will extend to coastal and maritime habitats and help protect the state's salt marshes. —Susan Safford

In an effort to mitigate climate change impacts, Gov. Maura Healey is set to sign an executive order banning the purchase of single-use plastic bottles by state agencies within the week. 

The ban will go into effect immediately, the governor announced at the Clinton Global Initiative’s Climate Week summit in New York Monday. 

Massachusetts will be the first state in the country to adopt a procurement ban on single-use plastic bottles for state agencies.

“We know that plastic waste and plastic production are among the leading threats to our oceans, our climate, and our environmental justice,” Healey said Monday. “In government, we have an obligation; We also have an opportunity to not only stop contributing to this damage, but to chart a better path forward.”

Healey noted that as a coastal state, Massachusetts is particularly vulnerable to climate change. It’s “our biggest threat,” she said. “We also believe taking action is our greatest opportunity — an opportunity to secure a safe, prosperous, and sustainable future.”

Also on Monday, Healey announced updated biodiversity conservation targets for the state of Massachusetts, that exceed the global “30 by 30” initiative — an agreement among world leaders and ecological experts to conserve 30 percent of the earth’s land and water by 2030. 

Healey is slated to sign an executive order this week that will direct state agencies to establish additional biodiversity targets for 2030, 2040, and 2050, along with strategies to meet those targets, in order to counter the threat of significant biodiversity loss. 

The protections will be among the first in the country to extend to coastal and maritime habitats.

“Steps will include taking swift action to stem the loss of our salt marshes — which provide critically important habitat, protect inland areas from storm impacts, and remove large amounts of carbon from the atmosphere,” Healey said. “And we will be looking at strategies such as ‘marine protected areas’ to ensure coastal and ocean habitats critical to biodiversity can recover and thrive.”

With over 430 species listed as endangered in Massachusetts, and nearly one million species facing extinction worldwide, Healey said it is paramount to improve natural resource protections as climate change effects worsen.

“Biodiversity loss threatens public health, economic stability, food security and our emissions goals,” the governor said, adding “we know that seas and forests are the most fundamental climate resources we have. . . we are determined to protect them.”



  1. Interesting another woke politician, wanting to make headlines. Single use plastic bottles is more than just water bottles it includes most drinking products, most cleaning products, most condiments that may be used in their break rooms like ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, cream and milk for the coffee and most anything that comes in a liquid or semi liquid form. Looks like Marthas Vineyard is ahead of the curve on the conservation land as roughly 45% of Marthas Vineyard is already in some sort of conservation restriction.

    • Most of it is water.
      Do you enjoy p0lastic water bottle’s in our environment?
      What should be done about it.
      Healy is the Governor, she won be by landslide, The Trump endorsed Republican got 21% of the Island vote. She needs no headlines.
      Trump did not endorse Baker.
      Healy is as woke as the State she serves.
      We the people want to consume less plastic, we are a democracy.
      What percentage of conservation land do we the people of the Island want? More than half?

  2. Oh, good. Another ban. Yawn. Call me when she signs a bill that mandates curbside pickups of recyclables by municipalities. It’s actually shameful that a community that pretends to pride itself on its environmental awareness can’t even get this simple thing right. Instead they expect people, tourists and residents alike, to stuff cans into that infernal machine one by one, or buy a dump sticker and crate your empties to the dump yourself where you forego your deposit as an additional expense. I want little from OB government, and expect even less – but come on – why can’t we have curbside recycling pickup like every other place in the US that I have visited? How much recyclable material ends up in the trash stream as a result of the difficulty of recycling it? We pat ourselves on the back for banning plastic straws while probably 40 – 50% of our trash stream is recyclable. I’ll bet you could put it out to bid, and someone could make a business of it at 10 cents a container. Everyone hates litter, but we bring it on ourselves with our silly disposal policies. You want to save the earth? Then get step one right.

    • It’s actually shameful that we fail so miserably at doing the Right thing.

      Everyone hates litter, what is your solution?

      In 1982 the deposit was five cents, it was marginally profitable to recycle, for all concerned.
      The min wage has triple since then. The deposit will have to go to a quarter to be effective.
      That is the right step.

  3. I love how liberals ban plastic straws and use paper straws for their Starbucks drink in a plastic cup and plastic lid while the paper straw is wrapped in plastic. Good job.

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