You did it!
Last week, the Canadian government moved to ban six types of single use plastic: checkout bags, straws, stir sticks, six-pack rings, cutlery, and food ware made from hard-to-recycle plastics.
No question, this is big. Even five years ago, I'd say this kind of policy leap was out of reach. And you made it happen by showing you were fed up with plastic pollution and that you were willing to take action in your personal choices and in your communities through initiatives such as the Ontario Chapter’s Plastic Free July Challenge. Thank you and congratulations!
But much more needs to be done to make plastic pollution history - especially because we know that the fossil fuel and chemical industries have woken up to how effective you have been at pushing for action.
Research papers shared at our Conservation Committee last week show how dire the problem with plastics is. One of these, a paper published in the journal Science, shows that we need to increase the ambition of existing efforts and set limits on plastic production to truly tackle the plastic waste problem.
In essence, the researchers conclude that, “[i]ncreased waste management capacity alone cannot keep pace with projected growth in plastic waste generation.”
So, even as we celebrate, we need to double down even further to truly tackle plastic pollution and get to zero plastic being released into the environment.
Please write today to thank Minister Wilkinson and the Canadian government for taking a stand on plastics, and to show you stand with them to support even further actions needed to confront plastic pollution.
 Borrelle et al. 2020. Predicted growth in plastic waste exceeds efforts to mitigate plastic pollution.Science. 369 (6510), 1515-1518. https://science.sciencemag.org/content/369/6510/1515.full