MGM Resorts International announced Monday single-use plastic straws will no longer be served at all of its properties including Las Vegas.
Both single use plastic “stir straws” and drinking straws have been removed from casino floors, buffets, cafes, bars, lounges and restaurants, MGM said in a press release.
The company said the ban went into affect at all 19 resorts across the nation in support of an initiative aimed to remove more than 250,000 straws a day from landfills and waterways, or 100 million straws per year, according to MGM.
Straws are one of the most common littered items in the United States and single use plastic straws that are littered in the planet’s oceans severely affect wildlife and marine life, MGM said.
MGM said the company and their employees understand the necessity in protecting the planet and reducing their environmental footprint, or how much waste is produced.
“We began the pilot program here in Las Vegas in the beginning of May at ARIA and Mandalay Bay,” Timothy Ryan, Vice President Food and Beverage Strategy at MGM, said. “The response from customers has been so positive we have decided to quickly train our employees at all our U.S. resorts to stop automatically serving single use straws.”
Roughly 8 million metric tons of plastic are eventually tossed into the ocean a year. In 2017, plastic straws were the 11th most common item found in ocean trash. One plastic drinking straw can take up to 200 years to break down in the environment, MGM stated.
The company said straws would only be served upon request.
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