Single-use plastic water bottle ban

On May 4, 2022, Arlington Town Meeting passed a single-use plastic water bottle ban by a vote of 199-42.

This bold action reaffirms our Town’s environmental leadership and sets an example of good stewardship for a green and sustainable Arlington.

Why did residents decide to ban sales of single-use plastic bottled water?

More than 1.5 billion beverage bottles are sold each year in Mass.

Only around 20% get recycled. The rest end up as litter or in landfills and incinerators which pollute our air and water.

Discarded plastic destroys habitats, harms wildlife, and affects public health by contaminating the food chain.

Plastic is petroleum based and a contributor to climate change.

We can’t recycle our way out of the single-use plastic pollution crisis—our Reduce Single-Use! campaign helps to reduce our local consumption.

Bottled water has a low-cost, local, and readily available substitute: tap water.

Our Arlington on Tap campaign encourages the consumption of Arlington’s high-quality tap water in restaurants, at refill stations, and with reusable water bottles.

The local bylaw:

  • N Prohibits the sale of plastic bottles of non-carbonated, non-flavored water in sizes of 1 liter or less.
  • NApplies to any business in Arlington that sells bottled water, as well as to events, Town buildings, schools, and houses of worship.
  • NTook effect November 1, 2022.
  • NMakes Arlington the 24th and largest municipality in Massachusetts to pass single-use plastic bottled water restrictions, starting with Concord in 2012.
  • NReduces litter in our streets, parks, and waterways.