Last August, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment announced it would remove plastic shopping bags at all its theme parks, establishing it as the largest theme park operator to establish this commitment. Park gift shops will now offer paper bags made from 100% recycled paper or guests can choose to use reusable bags.
This will keep an estimated 4 million plastic bags from entering landfills and the environment each year. SeaWorld stated approximately 1.4 billion tons of trash, including plastic bags, enter the ocean annually. Wildlife such as endangered sea turtles often mistake plastic bags for jellyfish, one of their favorite foods.
"SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has a long history of actively supporting sea turtle conservation and rescues hundreds of these animals each year in the wild that have been impacted by human behavior," a SeaWorld spokesperson told PlasticsToday. "This change is natural for us and provides an opportunity to communicate to guests how they, too, can help make a difference for these animals."