Gord Johns welcomes NDP’s next step in fight against ocean plastics


OTTAWA - Today NDP MP Nathan Cullen (Skeena-Bulkley Valley) tabled the Zero-Waste Packaging Act in Parliament, building on the work of NDP MP Gord John’s (Courtenay-Alberni) ocean plastic motion which received over 170,000 signatures. The bill is based on an idea by Ben Korving, the winner of the Create Your Canada competition held across Northwest B.C. last summer.
The Zero-Waste Packaging Act would require that all consumer product packaging is either recyclable or compostable. The aim is to reduce plastic waste, cut the cost that municipalities pay for landfills and help Canadians recycle.

“Only 11% of plastics in Canada are recycled. The government says they are committed to reducing plastic waste, but we don’t have any national legislation to get us to a zero waste Canada. We must do better. That’s why I’m honoured to present the Zero-Waste Packaging Act,” said Cullen. “This is an idea that came straight from the Northwest, where folks understand that urgent change is needed to stop the damage to our oceans caused by waste. It’s clear that it’s time to make the transition to a zero-waste Canada.”
Ben was in Ottawa to watch the bill being presented and spoke of how his idea seemed like an obvious solution to the problem of plastic waste. “If the European Union, with over 500 million people, can commit to taking meaningful steps to tackle plastic waste then surely Canada can too,” said Ben.

A number of environmental and recycling groups have already expressed support for the bill, pointing to its potential to set clear standards to make recycling easier for Canadians and to reduce the environmental damage from excessive plastic packaging.