Single-use plastics ban will hurt Canadian manufacturing jobs, CME says
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The industry has repeatedly said that the better approach is to develop a circular economy that treats plastics as a resource to be managed.
The Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) association says that an outright ban of single use plastics will not help achieve environmental health goals, following the federal government’s announcement of its plans to ban the import and manufacture of single-use plastics like checkout bags, cutlery, and foodservice ware by December 2022.
While it says that it shares the federal government’s commitment to reducing plastic waste, CME officials say that a better approach than bans is to develop a circular economy that treats plastics as a resource to be managed and recycled back into the Canadian economy rather than ending up in a landfill. “Canadian manufacturers do not believe an outright ban will accomplish this goal,” CME officials said in a June 20 news release.
“Canada acting alone to ban single-use plastics without coordinating with other countries will do little to move the needle on reducing plastic pollution. It will punish Canadian manufacturers and all their suppliers,” said CME president and CEO Dennis Darby in the news release. “Production of these products will just move to the U.S. or to other countries and we will still have not solved the problem.”
Moreover, CME says it is “disappointed” to see the government will also prohibit the export of plastics in these categories by 2025, a decision it says will affect more Canadian jobs tied to this sector. Additionally, CME says many businesses will lose access to export markets as a result of this decision and that will drive down Canadian exports.
The federal government recently detailed its plans to ban the import and manufacture of single-use plastics, including checkout bags, cutlery, foodservice ware, ring carriers, stir sticks, and straws by December 2022.