Federal ban on single-use plastic by 2021 is a ‘win for wildlife,’ says WWF-Canada

17 June 2019

Toronto, June 10, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- WWF-Canada welcomes the federal government’s announcement to ban single-use plastic by 2021. While details are still to come, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Monday that determining which products fall under the ban will be based in scientific evidence. 

“This is a great win for nature, it's a great win for wildlife,” said Megan Leslie, WWF-Canada president and CEO. “Promises are one thing: I hope we see action. And I hope we see cross-party support for an initiative like this. Wildlife comes in all party colours!” 

At current rates, experts say there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050. Entanglement and ingestion are the main causes of plastic-related injury and death of seabirds, fish and marine mammals.  

The ban will also include extended producer responsibility, which means businesses must manage the plastic pollution resulting from the products they create and distribute. 

“Some industry has already come forward and said, ‘We’ll do our best to reduce the amount of plastic we’re using,’ but what industry needs is a level playing field. That’s why it’s so important to have these kinds of regulations at the federal level,” said Leslie.  

Background on plastic waste 
Globally each year, eight million tonnes of waste are added to our marine environment. Most of the plastic waste originates on land and works its way through our freshwater systems into the ocean. Once in the water, plastic litter doesn’t disappear. It breaks up into smaller and smaller pieces known as microplastics, which are too small to be cleaned up from our waters. Plastics of all sizes pose threats to wildlife through ingestion and entanglement. Experts predict that 99 per cent of all seabirds will be eating plastic by 2050. 

About World Wildlife Fund Canada 
WWF-Canada creates solutions to the environmental challenges that matter most for Canadians. We work in places that are unique and ecologically important, so that nature, wildlife and people thrive together. Because we are all wildlife. For more information, visit wwf.ca. 


Tina KnezevicWWF-Canada+1 416-873-8448tknezevic@wwfcanada.orgJoshua OstroffWWF-Canada+1 416-529-2967jostroff@wwfcanada.org