Canada to ban single-use plastics in 2021

Less than 10 per cent of plastic used in Canada gets recycled

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during a joint press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, Friday, June 7, 2019. (Philippe Wojazer/Pool via AP)

Canada will ban single-use plastics as early as 2021, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Monday.

Trudeau said the specific items to be banned will be determined based on a science-based review, but the government is considering items such as water bottles, plastic bags and straws.

“As early as 2021, Canada will ban harmful single-use plastics from coast to coast,” Trudeau said.

READ MORE: Liberals to announce plan to ban single-use plastics as early as 2021

Trudeau said his government is drawing inspiration from the European Union’s Parliament, which voted overwhelmingly in March to impose a wide-ranging ban on single-use plastics to counter pollution from discarded items that end up in waterways and fields. Legislatures of the EU member states must vote on the measure before it takes effect.

“Many other countries are doing that and Canada will be one of them,” Trudeau said. “This is a big step but we know can do this for 2021.”

Less than 10 per cent of plastic used in Canada gets recycled. The government said that 1 million birds and over 100,000 sea mammals worldwide are injured or die each year when they mistake plastic for food or become entangled.

The EU’s measure would affect a range of plastic products for which reasonable alternatives exist, from straws to earbuds, starting in 2021.

Disposable utensils would not be completely off-limits, but the EU measure calls for them to be made of sustainable materials when possible. The EU legislation also sets a goal of having 90 per cent of plastic bottles recycled by 2025 and of halving the litter from the 10 items that turn up in oceans most often.

The EU estimated the changes will cost the bloc’s economy 259 million to 695 million euros a year ($291 million to $781 million). It’s not clear what the cost would be for Canada.

China’s decision to no longer import some of the EU’s waste helped spur the plastics ban.

China banned the import of plastic waste last year, causing other Southeast Asian nations to become new destinations. The Philippines, complaining of being treated like a dumpsite by wealthier nations, shipped 69 containers of what its officials called illegally transported garbage back to Canada in May.

ALSO READ: Canadian shoppers want green packaging, but reluctant to pay more: study

ALSO READ: Tofino and Ucluelet officially ban plastic bags and straws

Rob Gillies, The Associated Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Langford firefighters raise $1,065 for Burn Camp

B.C. firefighters and burn survivors raise $200,068 this year for Burn Camp

Victoria church to ring bells for 75th anniversary of atomic bombings

Bells expected at 8:15 a.m. on Aug. 6 and 11:50 a.m. on Aug. 9

VicPD find used, uncapped needle tied to handrail in Beacon Hill Park

Officers believe the needle was put there with the intent to harm someone

PHOTOS: Kids, parents cool off at Langford splash park

Centennial Park is home to a popular water feature

Saanich landfill gets used oil and antifreeze dropoff centre upgrades

BC Used Oil Management Association oversees upgrades, two new facilities in province

VIDEO: Otter pups learn to swim at B.C. wildlife rescue facility

Watch Critter Care’s Nathan Wagstaffe help seven young otters go for their first dip

Michael Buble among 13 British Columbians to receive Order of B.C.

Ceremony will be delayed to 2021 due to COVID-19

U.S. border communities feel loss of Canadian tourists, shoppers and friends

Restrictions on non-essential travel across the Canada-U.S. border have been in place since March 2`

Rollout of COVID-19 Alert app faces criticism over accessibility

App requires users to have Apple or Android phones made in the last five years, and a relatively new operating system

Alleged impaired driver sparks small wildfire near Lytton after crash: B.C. RCMP

Good Samaritans prevented the blaze from getting out of control

B.C. First Nation adopts ‘digital twinning’ software to better manage territory

Software allows users to visualize what a mountain might look like if the trees on its slopes were logged

Woman arrested near Nanaimo beach after alleged road rage incidents

37-year-old woman facing charges including assault, assaulting a police officer, impaired driving

All inquiry recommendations implemented after fatal Port Hardy RCMP shooting: Ministry

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. cleared the RCMP officers involved of wrongdoing

Most Read