Stage 1 fire restrictions, enacted for unincorporated areas of western Boulder County.

Plastic Pollution Reduction Act

Plastic Pollution Reduction Act

The statewide Plastic Pollution Reduction Act (CO. House bill 21-1162) was passed in 2021, which requires stores with 3 or more locations in Colorado to charge a fee for paper or plastic carryout bags. The amount of the fee can vary by municipality or county as they are able to adopts their own bag fee and are responsible for education, implementation, collection, and spending of fees.

Sixty percent of the bag fees collected will go to the municipality, while stores retain the remaining funds. Municipalities must use their share to pay for administrative costs, enforcement, and education or outreach programs supporting waste diversion.

Starting January 2024, plastic bags will be banned statewide. Stores may only give out recycled paper bags for a fee. Also in 2024, polystyrene (Styrofoam) products used as containers for ready to eat food and drinks will be banned.

On and after July 2024, local governments can implement and enforce more stringent laws to manage or restrict plastics.

Timeline for plastic bag ban implementation mentioned above.

Graphic courtesy of Eco Cycle

Check with your city or town’s website for bag fees specific to your area. If you do not see your town or city below, it is because they do not have any stores that require the bag fee.

The PPRA brings about significant changes for businesses and customers, especially those involved in the use of takeout containers. To help navigate these changes and explore sustainable alternatives, we recommend checking out the comprehensive “Guide to Sustainable Serviceware for Restaurants and Food Prep Businesses.” This guide provides valuable insights into environmentally friendly options for service-ware, supporting businesses and customers in making more sustainable choices.

Contact Us

Resource Conservation Division



Boulder County Recycling Center
1901 63rd St.
Boulder, CO 80301
Map and Directions
Hours: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.