Single-use Plastics to be Banned in Canada under new Regulations

The Canadian government seeks to ban the country's production and import of single-use plastics by the year's closing. It said on Monday, June 20, 2022. 

Aside from medical or targeted exceptions, the country will curtail all preventable plastic waste, including single-use plastic grocery bags, straws, cutlery, food service ware associated with difficult-to-recycle plastics, and stir sticks. According to the press release, Canada consumes about single-use 15 billion plastic shopping bags and 16 million straws (approx) annually, which is contributing to the majority of the plastic waste littering Canadian shorelines. 

While the ban is scheduled for action by December 2022, businesses will have up to December 2023 to shift to sustainable products and services. 

Key Highlights: 

By June 2023 

  • Single-use flexible plastic, with exceptions, will be prohibited. 
  • Straws will be effectively banned.
  • Restrictions on the production and import of ring carriers and flexible straws sold with disposable drinks like juice boxes. 

By June 2024

  • Restrictions on the sale of ring carriers and flexible straws will take effect.

By 2030

  • Lower carbon emissions by 1.8 megatonnes in a year. 
  • Generate around several billion dollars in revenue and create 42,000 jobs (approx). 

The Canadian government aims to remove over 1.3 million tonnes of unrecyclable plastic waste and over 22,000 tonnes of plastic pollution from the world over the next ten years.

It is a part of the country's strong initiatives to counter plastic waste and pollution, preserve natural resources, and promote healthy ecosystems for its citizens and the planet. And naturally contribute to the Ocean Plastics Charter and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The government has released two guidance documents for plastic pollution policy and development in Canada: 

"By the end of the year, you won't be able to manufacture or import these harmful plastics," said Environment and Climate Change Minister Steven Guilbeault. "Businesses will begin offering the sustainable solutions Canadians want. With these new regulations, we're taking a historic step forward in reducing plastic pollution and keeping our communities and the places we love clean." 

Related blog posts:

What does the Supreme Court's EPA ruling mean?

5 Ways to Celebrate Plastic Free July

What are Microplastics?

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