Concern has been expressed by a number of trade associations regarding Canada’s ban on single-use plastics.
Single-use plastics are now prohibited in Canada according to new laws issued by the environment ministry. Single-use plastics such as checkout bags, cutlery, foodservice ware made of or containing plastics that are difficult to recycle, ring carriers, stir sticks, and straws are prohibited by regulations that were published by Canada’s Ministers of Environment and Climate Change Steven Guilbeault and Minister of Health Jean-Yves Duclos (with some exceptions).
The production and import of these single-use plastics will be prohibited beginning in December, according to a news release from Canada’s Environment Ministry. Through December 2023, the government will give businesses time to make the shift and use up their existing supply of these single-use plastic products. By the end of 2025, the rule also forbids the export of plastics in those six categories.
According to the Canadian Environment Ministry, this restriction is anticipated to result in the elimination of more than 1.3 million metric tons of plastics that are difficult to recycle as well as more than 22,000 metric tons of plastic pollution.
“We committed to enact a ban on single-use plastics for Canadians. That’s exactly what we did today, adds Guilbeault. You won’t be able to produce or import these dangerous plastics after this year. Following that, companies will start providing the eco-friendly options that Canadians demand, such as paper straws and reusable shopping bags. With these new rules, we’re making a significant advancement in lowering plastic pollution and maintaining the cleanliness of our neighborhoods and other special locations.
Industry organisations have voiced alarm about this decision. Washington’s Plastics Industry Association (Plastics) expresses disappointment at the restriction.
According to Matt Seaholm, president and chief executive officer of Plastics, “the disdain for manufacturing jobs on both sides of the border is disturbing.” It truly irritates me that there wasn’t a thorough economic analysis done before establishing such broad laws. Due to this action, certain plastics companies will be forced to eliminate employees or completely close facilities.
“None of our members ever want one of their goods to wind up somewhere it isn’t supposed to. However, replacing a product with one that is likely to have a greater negative impact on the environment is totally unproductive, even though banning it will undoubtedly make it disappear.
The restrictions, continues Seaholm, disregarded the chance to recycle single-use plastics. “Banning these products won’t dramatically reduce litter or waste; instead, it would raise expenses for businesses and consumers in the United States and Canada.”
The Ottawa, Ontario-based Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) expressed dissatisfaction with the restriction. “Banning particular single-use plastic items won’t solve the entire problem of plastics pollution and the management of post-consumer plastics,” according to CIAC.
According to Elena Mantagaris, vice president of the CIAC Plastics Division, “we are disappointed that safe, inert plastic materials that play such a significant role in Canadians’ lives are being banned when cutting-edge technologies like advanced recycling are available to manage them effectively.” To harness the $8 billion worth of plastics that are being disposed of in landfills and recirculate them in the economy, we need to invest in recycling infrastructure and innovation, particularly infrastructure to manage compostables.
According to CIAC, it intends to collaborate with the federal government of Canada to determine the full extent of the ban’s effects on businesses.