THE PROBLEM

Plastic pollution is found in every corner of the globe, from the deepest ocean trenches to the remotest arctic regions. Plastics do not biodegrade, but persist in the environment for hundreds of years, then break down in tiny pieces called micro plastics. These plastic particles make their way into our food, our water, and even into us.

The Solution

To protect marine animals, defend a healthy environment and stop plastics piling up around us, governments, businesses and individuals all have a role to play. Governments must ban toxic and tough to recycle products, and create laws aimed at reducing plastic waste, eliminating throwaway plastics, and increasing recycling. Businesses must commit to reducing their plastic packaging. And individuals must do their part to support the three Rs – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

Towards a Zero Plastic Waste Canada

Canada needs a national strategy to deal with our plastic pollution crisis. We are working towards a plastic waste free environment by 2025

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Cash it! Don’t trash it

Plastic pollution is out of control in the Great Lakes. In Ontario, we’re working to put a price on plastic bottles to keep them out of the environment and increase recycling rates.

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The Plastic Wall of Shame

We’re calling out companies for their downright shameful efforts to reduce single-use plastics. See who made the wall and tell them to clean up their acts.

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Read The Plastic Diaries

Break free from this plastic bubble. Check out our blog page for new and updated content to answer all your questions about plastic and where we fit in.

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Breaking News

It’s #PlasticFreeJuly. Let’s change the rules, so it’s easier for everyone to go plastic free

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, going plastic free felt like a Herculean task. But now more than ever it seems that everything is wrapped in...

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Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s safe to break-up with disposable plastic

This week, a statement from over 100 epidemiologists, virologists, and other medical experts confirmed it: disposable plastics aren‘t safer than reusables. Just make sure you’re...

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Industry doesn’t want plastic declared “toxic”. Too bad for them. It is

Just as we suspected, the chemical industry has been lobbying to block federal action on plastics. Recently, the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC) President...

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Are compostable plastics the solution to plastic pollution? We ask a scientist everything that you might want to know

More and more, consumers are seeing compostable plastic items—from plates and cutlery to garbage bags and coffee pods—on store shelves. But are these items a...

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Timeline

2019

Canadian government announces plan to ban single-use plastics by 2021

In June, the Canadian government announced its commitments to help reduce plastic waste, including banning single-use plastics (like bags and cutlery) by 2021 and extended producer responsibility.

2018

Canada spearheads landmark G7 Ocean Plastics Charter

The Canadian Government used its G7 presidency to lead the creation of a an international charter on plastic waste. The Charter was signed by five G7 nations, who committed to taking action to reduce their plastic waste.

2018

Sculpture made of 12,000 plastic bottles goes on display at Pride

A sculpture designed by artist Rebecca Jane Houston went on display at Toronto's Pride Parade in June, to amaze visitors with the scale of Ontario's plastic bottle problem. 12,000 represents the number of bottles thrown out in the province every four minutes.

2018

Towards a Zero Plastic Waste Future Declaration released

In June, we brought together a group of over 40 environmental and civil societies groups to release the Towards a Zero Plastic Waste Future Declaration, a roadmap for Canada to reach zero plastic waste by 2025.

"Seeing the amount of plastics that end up on our beaches reminds me of how powerful it is to avoid single-use waste like take-out cups, and replace them with reusables. Our actions can be amplified with strong environmental laws. That's why I support Environmental Defence's aim of getting manufacturers to take responsibility for their own products, and reducing Canada's plastic waste."

-Sophie Jacazio, Environmental Defence Outreach Team member

MEET THE TEAM

At Environmental Defence, we educate the public about a host of environmental issues, work with business and government leaders to advise on policy decisions and mobilize Canadians to create the cleaner, greener more prosperous country we’re striving for. Meet the team who works on Plastics.

Keith Brooks

Programs Director

Ashley Wallis

Plastics Program Manager

Daniella Niddery

Engagement Manager

Jen Mayville

Communications Manager

Join The Community

Change happens when people like you express your concern and make your voice heard. Join our email community to receive updates about Environmental Defence’s work and find ways you can help our efforts to defend clean water, a safe climate and healthy communities.