Feds make recommendations after public consultations on plastic recycling
Canadian PlasticsCanadian Plastics Recycling
Based on the responses, a series of new labelling rules are being developed.
The Canadian government has released a new report on what it heard from two public consultations focused on developing rules for recyclability and compostability labelling, and establishing a federal plastics registry for the plastic products industry.
From July 25, 2022, to October 7, 2022, the government asked Canadians, stakeholders, industry, and provincial, territorial and local governments for their views on new labelling rules for recycling and composting of plastics in Canada. The government also sought views on developing a registry for producers to report on the plastics they put into the economy.
Based on the responses, the government said, new labelling rules are being developed that would prohibit the use of the circular three-arrow symbol (often referred to as the chasing-arrows symbol) and other recyclability claims on plastic packaging and single-use plastics unless specific conditions are met. These conditions may include that at least 80 per cent of Canadians have access to recycling systems that accept, sort, and re-process these plastics.
In addition, new rules are being considered to control the use of terms such as “compostable”, “degradable”, or “biodegradable” in the labelling of plastic packaging and single-use plastic items. “These new rules would help Canadians make informed decisions about the plastics they buy, and how to properly dispose of the products at their end of life,” government officials said. The labelling rules would be part of new regulations that would also require minimum levels of recycled plastic in certain products.
The government also says it’s committed to establishing a “federal plastics registry” that would require annual reporting of plastics in the Canadian economy and how these products are managed at the end of their lives. “The registry would also collect and publish data for Canadians on the entire life cycle of plastics in Canada,” the government said.
The government says it intends to publish a proposed framework for the recycled content and labelling regulations later this year, which will be available for public consultation. “Comments received on this framework will inform the proposed regulations that are targeted for publication before the end of the year,” it said.