Effective from 1 January, the initiative aims at eliminating the use of 2.2 million plastic straws each year. equivalent to saving one ton of plastic annually.
"Our company is constantly looking for new ways to decrease our carbon footprint, so that we can be ever-more responsible stewards of our environment," said Mark McWhinnie, senior vice president of resort operations and development for Sands China Ltd. "This ban on plastic straws, along with other plastic-reduction measures, will have a significant impact on our sustainability efforts, resulting in a greener Macau."
Other measures include a plan to gradually replace hotel rooms' single-use bathroom amenities - such as shampoo and conditioner bottles - with refillable dispensers. Implementation is scheduled to begin early this year and is estimated to eliminate around 2.7 million plastic bottles per year.
Sands China has also redesigned the complimentary bottles of water offered to rooms and suites, which results in three million fewer bottles of water provided per year. Moreover, the company is installing filtered water dispensers in properties' public areas on a trial basis. If successful, the change would be rolled out at all properties, massively reducing the usage of bottled water.
Sands China's initiatives to reduce single-use plastic have also identified other areas for improvement. One such area is in the company's laundry services, where efforts are being made to eliminate, replace, or recycle 95% of single-use plastic packaging, clothes hangers and garment clips.
Sands China's environmental initiatives are part of the Sands ECO360 global sustainability strategy - designed to help minimise the company's environmental impact - of parent company Las Vegas Sands Corp., which utilises measures like energy saving, resource recycling, conservation and community engagement. The initiative also leads the way in sustainable building development and resort operations.