Tuesday March 15, 2011 | 03:25 PM

Rep. Chellie Pingree isn't giving up on her attempt to persuade House GOP leaders to switch back to environmentally friendly plates, cups and utensils in Capitol Hill restaurants.

The Maine Democrat from the 1st District has criticized a decision by House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio and other House GOP leaders to reverse the policy adopted by Democrats when they were in the House majority of  using environmentally friendly eating ware.

Pingree today released a letter she wrote to GOP leaders that says while styrofoam products in the House eating establishments may be cheaper initially, "there are significant health and environmental risks associated with styrofoam, as well as additional costs associated with increased waste removal. The desire to save a few pennies should never come at the expense of jeoparsizing staff, members' and visitors' health."

Pingree's office says 102 other members, all Democrats, signed her letter.

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Kevin Miller is Washington bureau chief for the Portland Press Herald and MaineToday Media. He has worked as a journalist in Maine for 6 ½ years, covering the environment, politics and the State House. Before arriving in Maine, he wrote about politics, government and education for newspapers in Virginia and Maryland.
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