Canada is banning single-use plastics – News Line
Canada is banning the manufacture and import of single-use plastics until the end of the year, the government announced Monday in a major effort to tackle plastic waste and tackle climate change.
The ban will cover items such as checkout bags, cutlery, straws, and food items made of or containing plastic, with a few exceptions for medical reasons. The government said it would take effect in December 2022, and that the sale of these items would be banned until December 2023 to allow enough time to move businesses in Canada and eliminate existing stock.
Disposable plastics make up most of the plastic waste found off the coast of Canada. According to official figures, about 15 billion plastic checkout bags are used each year and about 16 million straws are used every day.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who pledged to phase out plastics in 2019, said the ban would eliminate more than 1.3 million tons of plastic waste over the next decade – about 1 million tons of trash. Equivalent to garbage bags.
“We promised to ban harmful single-use plastics, and we are living up to that promise,” Trudeau wrote in a tweet Monday.
To combat international plastic pollution, Canada will also ban the export of these plastics by the end of 2025.
Steven Gelbeult, Federal Minister for Environment and Climate Change said. “Following this ban, businesses will begin to offer their customers the sustainable solutions that Canadians want, whether it’s paper straw or reusable bags.”
“With these new regulations, we’re taking a historic step towards reducing plastic pollution, and keeping our communities and places clean,” Guilbeault said.
Canada’s move comes as countries begin imposing sanctions to tackle the problem of plastics, plastics that are made from petroleum and can take hundreds of years to decompose.
Sarah King, head of Greenpeace Canada’s Oceans and Plastics campaign, said in a statement that Canada’s ban was a significant step, but that “we are still not on the front lines.”
“The government needs to go into high gear by increasing the ban list and reducing the overall production of plastics,” King said. “For the other 95%, relying on recycling is a denial of the scope of the crisis.”