The Walt Disney Co. announced Thursday that it will eliminate single-use straws and plastic stirrers at all of its theme parks and resorts by mid-2019.
“Eliminating plastic straws and other plastic items are meaningful steps in our long-standing commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Bob Chapek, chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products, in a blog post announcing the news.
“These new global efforts help reduce our environmental footprint, and advance our long-term sustainability goals.”
The Walt Disney Company estimated that its efforts to stem the use of straws and stirrers at parks will amount to a reduction of “more than 175 million straws and 13 million stirrers annually.”
A representative for Disney confirmed to Fox News that paper straws will be available upon request. The company further confirmed it is currently in the process of identifying and developing “alternative options” for guests with disabilities.
In addition to straws and stirrers, Disney announced it would be working toward eliminating polystyrene cups at parks, and transitioning away from non-refillable amenities in its hotels and cruise cabins. The company also says it will make efforts toward reducing its reliance on single-use plastic bags, and instead offer more reusable bags for guests, at a “nominal” price.
The company joins other theme parks — including SeaWorld, Busch Gardens and Sesame Place, which are all owned by SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Inc. — in announcing initiatives to phase out straws and plastics at parks.