The Government of Canada is set to introduce a ban on single-use plastics by 2021 in a bid to reduce waste, support innovation, and promote the use of affordable and safe alternatives.
The ban will cover harmful single-use plastics such as bags, straws, cutlery, plates, and stir sticks.
As part of the ban, the government will work collaboratively with provinces and territories across Canada to introduce standards and targets for companies producing and selling products with plastic packaging, in order to make them responsible for their plastic waste.
It also aims to reduce 1.8 million tonnes of carbon pollution, generate billions of dollars in revenue, and create approximately 42,000 jobs by enhancing the way of tackling plastic waste as well as investing in innovative solutions.
Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said: "Canadians know firsthand the impacts of plastic pollution, and are tired of seeing their beaches, parks, streets, and shorelines littered with plastic waste.
"We have a responsibility to work with our partners to reduce plastic pollution, protect the environment, and create jobs and grow our economy. We owe it to our kids to keep the environment clean and safe for generations to come."
In addition, the government expects that these measures will support the action plan to implement the country-wide 'Strategy on Zero Plastic Waste' to be developed by the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment.
Commenting on the ban, Canada Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna said: "We’ve all seen the disturbing images of fish, sea turtles, whales, and other wildlife being injured or dying because of plastic garbage in our oceans. Canadians expect us to act.
"That’s why our government intends to ban harmful single-use plastic products where science warrants it, and why we’re working with partners across Canada and around the world to reduce plastic pollution."