By Giovanna Maselli

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MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) — Plastic bags may be a thing of the past in Miami Beach very soon.

City commissioners this week unanimously passed an ordinance requiring sidewalk cafes to stop using plastic bags.

The move was part of the city’s efforts to reduce waste and keep within their recycling goals. However, the city’s ordinance will not take effect unless the court rules in a favor of a similar ordinance passed by the City of Coral Gables earlier this year.

The lawsuit challenging Coral Gables’ new polystyrene ordinance is being litigated.

Several statutes in Florida restrict municipalities from enforcing certain types of environmental legislation, but those statutes are currently under review due to the lawsuit.

Miami Beach officials say the unanimous vote is a good move and they are taking steps towards becoming a “completely sustainable” city.

“As a leading municipality in environmental policy, I’m proud we’ve taken legislative action that is crucial in preserving our 70 miles of coastline and precious ocean waters,” expressed City Manager Jimmy L. Morales. “By simply replacing plastic bags with a reusable and biodegradable alternative, we can enhance the well-being of our residents and visitors and protect our marine life now and for generations to come.”

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