Canadian Manufacturing

Ontario looks to drastically cut back on waste

Proposed legislation would foster innovation in packaging , boost recycling in corporate sector, government says

TORONTO—Canada’s most populous province is generating too much waste and not recycling enough, the Ontario government says.

As a result, the province has introduced legislation that will not only divert more waste from landfills, but should create jobs and help fight climate change.

“The new Waste Free Ontario Act… would encourage producers to turn more of their waste into new products by requiring them to take full responsibility for their products and packaging. The new legislation, which would be phased in over time, would also help fight climate change by reducing greenhouse gas pollution that results from the landfilling of products that could otherwise be recycled or composted,” the government said.

In addition to the proposed legislation, the province has also tabled a draft of its Waste Free Ontario strategy and is seeking public and stakeholder feedback. The overall waste strategy is designed to transition Ontario toward producing zero waste and zero greenhouse gas emissions from waste.

“Ontario has a bold new plan to transform how we manage waste that encourages the development of products that are never discarded,” Glen Murray, the province’s Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, said. “Instead, they are reintroduced into a system to be reused, refurbished, recycled or reintegrated into new products-this is called the circular economy.”

“This also provides business with the incentive to design innovative ways of turning what is considered a waste into a resource,” the minister added.

Together, the government hopes the proposed act and overarching strategy would foster innovation in packaging by encouraging businesses to produce recyclable products as well as boost recycling in the corporate and institutional sectors.

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