Statement from Karen Wirsig, Plastics Program Manager, on the Federal Government’s Release of Final Regulations to Ban Six Single-Use Plastics

Toronto | Traditional territories of the Huron-Wendat, the Anishnaabeg, Haudenosaunee, Chippewas and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation – We’ve been working toward this day for many years and are relieved it has finally come. This morning, the federal government released the final regulations to ban six single-use plastics. We applaud the government for making these single-use plastic bans a reality. They’re coming in a year earlier than the draft regulations suggested and now include a ban on the export of these harmful products to other countries. These are welcome developments that reflect the expectations of Canadians and environmental groups like Environmental Defence.

Single-use plastics are filling up landfills, littering our streets and literally choking wildlife. Banning these plastics is the most effective way to solve the problem. Leading countries on every continent are implementing bans on plastics, so it’s good to see Canada keeping its promise to roll out bans here. But this is only the first of many steps the government must take to reach its goal of zero plastic waste by 2030. We’ll be looking for additional bans to address more single-use plastics that continue to plague the environment, as well as measures to ensure reuse and refill options are widely available.

We also continue to be appalled that the country’s biggest plastic makers are suing the government to try to stop federal action on plastic pollution. The plastics industry insists that better waste collection and recycling are the answer but after years of failed recycling efforts, it’s never been more obvious that plastic pollution is not a waste management problem. These bans are the first clear sign that making and using less plastic is not only possible, but doable and necessary.

The Honourable Karina Gould, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development (left) and Karen Wirsig, Plastics Program Manager, Environmental Defence (right) at today’s announcement in Toronto, ON. Photo by: / Shay Markowitz
Karen Wirsig, Plastics Program Manager, Environmental Defence made remarks at today’s announcement in Toronto, ON. Photo by: / Shay Markowitz

ABOUT ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE ( Environmental Defence is a leading Canadian environmental advocacy organization that works with government, industry and individuals to defend clean water, a safe climate and healthy communities.

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