A RM of La Broquerie resident is requesting that the province step up and enforce existing regulations that would ultimately reduce the volume of waste packaging consumers are forced to accept.
In a letter addressed to Gord Mackintosh, Minister of Conservation and Water Stewardship, La Broquerie resident Wade Wiebe points out the province needs to be more proactive with forcing companies to reduce the amount of packaging in their goods instead of relying on residents to recycle the excess waste.
“As a consumer of packaged goods, I’m frustrated at the lack of control I have in reducing my
waste,” stated Wiebe. “When I shop, I have little choice but to accept products in the packaging they are supplied with. I’m not alone in having purchased a product despite the exorbitant, wasteful packaging it comes in, only to have to deal with it when I get home.”
He added that many items are not recyclable and what is left is used to make downgraded plastic or paper before it reaches the landfill.
“It may be seen as cynicism, but the reality is that nearly all the plastic ever created still exists, including the Slurpee cup and straw I bought when I was nine,” Wiebe stresses. “It hasn’t gone on to bigger and better things – it’s in the garbage.”
“My question is, if the Packaging and Printed Paper Stewardship Regulation exists to enforce stewardship on the distributors of packaging materials, why am I the steward of their wastes,” Wade asks.
He adds that a regulation that states a province-wide, convenient collection system for waste packaging and printed paper without user fees at the point of collection is confusing.
“Recyclable materials are indeed accepted in my municipality without charge, but I am charged for disposal of non-recyclable materials,” Wiebe continued. “This would seem to be in contravention of the Regulation which does not make a distinction between the two.”
Wiebe noted that while the regulations state a that stores should have a point of sale information program for the purpose of the waste reduction and prevention program, he has never seen such a program other than the installation of “bring a bag” displays in some larger stores.
“We are forced to accept the garbage that wraps our products, or do without the goods,” Wiebe stressed. “We are willing to recycle – especially very recyclable materials like aluminum, paper and glass – we simply want less of it.”