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On December 14, 2011 the National Park Service issued a memorandum encouraging individual parks to ban the sale of disposable plastic water bottles within the parks.
On August 16, 2017 the memorandum was discontinued, and the National Park Service no longer discouraged the sale of disposable plastic water bottles.
On September 13, 2017 U.S. Representative Mike Quigley introduced the “Reducing Waste in National Parks Act” (H.R. 3768), which seeks to reinstate the voluntary ban.
On September 22, 2017, in response to a Freedom of Information Act request, the National Park Service publicly released a report from May, 2017 which evaluated the success of the voluntary ban. It determined that the policy reduced plastic use by up to 111 million pounds, prevented up to 141 million tons of greenhouse gases from being emitted, and conserved a significant amount of energy and landfill space.