Canada to ban single-use plastics by 2021

Canada is the latest country to follow the European Union’s
ambitious ban of single-use plastics,
which will go into effect by 2021. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
announced the upcoming ban, which still has details to iron out, in
an attempt to address the marine litter crisis. The announcement
also comes months before the election this fall, during which
political experts expect climate change to take center stage.

Less than 10 percent of all plastics in Canada are recycled,
with 300 million tons thrown out every year. This recycling rate is similar
in the United States, the largest plastic consumer in the world,
where about
9 percent
of plastics are recycled. In every corner of the
globe, plastic waste is reaching the ocean and wreaking havoc on
marine species from sea turtles to fish and whales.

Related: Have your plastic and eat it too – average American
ingests 50,000 microplastic particles a year

To put it into perspective for citizens, Prime Minister Trudeau
explained, “As parents, we’re at a point when we take our kids
to the beach and we have to search out a patch of sand that isn’t
littered with straws, Styrofoam or bottles. That’s a problem, one
that we have to do something about.”

Legislators have yet to announce exactly which single-use
plastics will be banned, but the list could include cutlery,
straws, plates, stir sticks and bags. Throughout the European
Union, plastic bags, cutlery, cotton balls, stir sticks and balloon
sticks will be outlawed in 2021, with a reduction in plastic cups and other
food-related plastics also going into effect.

The ban legislation is also expected to detail regulations for
companies that produce significant plastic waste. The
policy will hold companies accountable and mandate they develop
targets and responsible waste management plans.

Prime Minister Trudeau’s environmental policy may help his
chances for re-election this fall, as voters are increasingly
concerned about the environment and climate change.

ViaThe BBC

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Source: FS – All – Ecology – News 2
Canada to ban single-use plastics by 2021