Archives - D.C.’s Styrofoam ban is now in effect!

Young Activist Club Starts a Straw Pledge

The Young Activist Club is pleased to introduce a new campaign to add to our long list: The Straw Pledge. The Straw pledge is a pretty basic pledge. It still is adressed towards businesses, being very similar to the current polystyrene free pledge. When it is signed by the business, it states that they will not give straws in drinks without a request by the customer. This is because it is a big waste of plastic due to the fact that many people who gets straws in their drinks don’t actually use them. One business has already signed and we expect many more. We hope that this pledge can be as succesful as the business pledge.

Sign our petition online at:

Alternatives for Polystyrene

When businesses or just ordinary people hear about our project, they say something along the lines “Well, what can we use that’s not polystyrene?”

Here’s your answer:

  • The most obvious one: Bring your own containers!
  • Corn plastic containers
  • Bagasse containers (bagasse is a byproduct of sugar cane production)
  • Compostable paper containers

Thousands of products are listed on Biodegradable Products Institute Catalog along with many, many more. Take a look!

To order products, go to these sites or ask your local businesses to carry them:


Please Sign Our Petition to School Superintendent Starr

Like many public schools, Montgomery County (MD) uses disposable styrofoam lunch trays. The Young Activist Club has researched and identified problems with styrofoam (resin #6, polystyrene), including that it is made from styrene, a carcinogen that can leach into food. The Club has raised more than $10,000 to pilot a tray washing project in one local county school, Piney Branch Elementary School. The pilot will assess whether the extra labor and water costs of washing trays can be offset by the costs of perpetually buying single-use disposable trays. But the local School Board and Superintendent have rejected the students’ idea. Please help us pressure the Superintendent to support this student-led initiative, which has the potential to save the public school district money at a time when it most needs it.

That’s why we created a petition to Dr. Joshua Starr, Superintendent, Montgomery County Public Schools, which says:

“We, the undersigned, support the Young Activist Club of Piney Branch Elementary School (Takoma Park, MD) and their project to pilot reusable instead of styrofoam lunch trays. Styrofoam is a plastic made from styrene, a known neurotoxicant and reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen. Once used, it is burned in the county incinerator, polluting the air. The Young Activist Club has raised the money to lease a dishwasher, buy washable trays and pay for labor costs. I urge you to support this project and the students’ initiative in identifying a problem and seeking a solution, particularly a solution with the potential to save public schools money.”

Will you sign our petition? Click here to add your name:


Students & Healthy Schools Event, Feb. 23rd

February 23, 2013
4 to 6 pm

Historic Takoma
7328 Carroll Ave., Takoma Park, MD

Film and discussion by the Young Activist Club

Students from several Takoma Park public schools have banded together to address the problems with disposable styrofoam foodservice ware. They’ve raised more than $10,000 to pilot a dishwasher at one school and are asking businesses to go styrofoam-free.

This event is part of a series of films and discussion on “Farms, Food and Public Policy,” sponsored by the Takoma Park Food Co-Op.

Support the Young Activists’ Plunge into the Bay, Jan. 26th!

The Young Activist Club will be joining the Chesapeake Climate Action Network (CCAN) in its Annual Polar Bear Plunge this year!

We have formed a team to raise $200 for CCAN, a nonprofit organization dedicated exclusively to fighting global warming in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC.

Once a year, activists, friends, and families in the MD/DC/VA region demonstrate their commitment to combat climate change – and keep winter cold – by taking a quick dip into the icy Potomac River at National Harbor.

Please support us by clicking on this link: