Zero-Waste Packaging Bill Tabled

Connector Winter 2019

The push against plastic ramped up again with a bill that would require all consumer packaging produced in Canada to be recyclable or compostable.

NDP MP Nathan Cullen tabled the Zero-Waste Packaging Act in Parliament Wednesday, which is aimed at all consumer product packaging with the goal of reducing plastic waste and cutting the cost municipalities pay for landfills.

The bill is based on an idea by Ben Korving, the winner of the Create Your Canada competition held across Northwest British Columbia last summer. It invites people to put forward ideas they think would help make Canada a better place.

“What his legislation does is end the use of single use plastics in Canada, making sure that all plastics we consume as citizens are compostable or truly recyclable,” Cullen told reporters at a press conference.

“We know the facts. Our oceans are filling up with plastics, our landfills too. As much as almost 90 per cent of the plastic we put in our blue boxes end up in landfills.”

Cullen noted part of the problem is that there are things people think are recyclable, because they’ve been told they are, when they actually aren’t.

“What Ben’s bill will do is make sure that everything that’s manufactured in Canada is truly recyclable.”

It builds on the efforts by NDP MP Gord Johns. “This bill that Ben has put forward is building on the motion and actually putting it in legislation so that we can take real action instead of more voluntary targets the Liberal government keeps announcing,” Johns said.

“We want to take concrete steps so that every piece of plastic we’re using is recyclable. We’ve been looking for real action. That’s what this bill will do.”

A number of environmental and recycling groups have already expressed support for the bill, pointing to its potential to set clear standards to make recycling easier for Canadians and to reduce the environmental damage from excessive plastic packaging.

Source: iPolitics