Ban Coming on Single-Use Plastics

The Federal government is taking steps to ban single-use plastics.

In an announcement on Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the situation of plastic overflowing in landfills and polluting oceans and waterways has reached a breaking point, and action is needed.

Meanwhile, the Plastics Program Manager for Environmental Defence welcomes the federal government's pledge to ban single-use plastics.

As heard on AM800's The Lynn Martin Show, Vito Buonsante says the idea is to shift the responsibility away from the user.

"To make that not a taxpayers problem, but a producers' problem. Right now the producers don't care about what happens to the products they put on the shelves because they're not paying for the collection and recovery," he says. 

 In additionto the environmental impacts. Buonsante says recycling is costing the government significant amounts.

"Taxpayers have paid into it for the last, since 2017 about $250-million to manage the Blue Box.  That's something that's welcome that it's going to be the producer.  And they can figure out the best way, if they should get rid of some products because they cannot be recycled."

Products expected to be included in the ban are drinking straws, water bottles, plastic bags, cutlery, stir sticks and fast food containers.

Trudeau says less than 10% of plastic used in Canada gets recycled, and without any change in habits, Canadians will be throwing out $11 billion worth of plastic products by 2030.

The change is expected to come into effect as early as 2021.