CIAC Responds to Federal Government’s proposed integrated management approach to plastic products to prevent waste and pollution

Plastics are vital to our modern way of life and are used to advance our society’s environmental, health and safety priorities, including a transition to a net-zero emissions future. However, plastic does not belong in landfills or the environment, it belongs in the economy.

The Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC), remains firmly of the view that the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA), 1999 is not an appropriate tool for managing post-consumer plastic waste. CIAC supports the development of national waste legislation that will provide the appropriate authorities and the tools to support advancing a circular economy for plastics in Canada.

CIAC is also concerned with the emphasis on banning certain products solely because they are widely used in society and are improperly managed at end of use. Our goal, as a society, must be to properly manage and establish a circular economy for all plastics products. Today, important work is being done in all jurisdictions, including Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec, to modernize and advance recycling systems towards a circular economy.

CIAC believes the Government of Canada should allow the appropriate time for consultation with industry and the provinces to ensure that its proposed approach to a circular economy for plastics is in line with the Canadian Council of Ministers of Environment (CCME) National Strategy and Action Plan on Zero Plastic Waste. We ask the Government to delay the timing of the addition of “manufactured plastic items” to Schedule 1 of CEPA in Canada Gazette Part 1 from October 10 until a period following the end of the public consultation on its Discussion Paper. This would allow sufficient time for industry and the provinces to provide input and ensure a decision is not made prematurely.

Canada’s plastics producers are taking important actions to address plastic waste on land, including source reduction, design for recycling, and reuse models; and investing in technologies to improve recycling. They have also made circular economy commitments to ensure that:
• 100 per cent of plastics packaging being recyclable or recoverable by 2030;
• 100 per cent of plastics packaging being reused, recycled, or recovered by 2040; and
• Implementation of Operation Clean Sweep by 2022, an international plastic stewardship program aimed at eliminating the escape of plastic pellets from industry operations, with a focus on preventing leakage into rivers and oceans.

Canada’s plastics manufacturers add $28 billion to the national economy annually and directly employ over 93,000 Canadians within 1,850 different businesses; 86 per cent of these are SMEs and the impact and job losses will be felt in communities across the country by family-run companies that have been operating for multiple generations.

CIAC will be providing advice to the federal government regarding its proposed integrated management approach to plastic products to prevent waste and pollution and we look forward to working with all levels of government in Canada to transition to a circular economy for plastics while maintaining well-paying jobs for thousands of Canadians.

NOVA Chemicals invests to prevent plastic debris in Indonesia

CIAC member, NOVA Chemicals, has announced a three-year investment of nearly $2 million to support a new global initiative to reduce marine plastic pollution in Southeast Asia called Project STOP.

The initiative’s goal is to design, implement and scale circular economy solutions to marine plastic pollution in countries with high leakage of plastics into oceans. NOVA Chemicals’ investment will support the first city partnership in Muncar, a coastal fishing community located in Banyuwangi, Indonesia. With minimal waste services in place, many citizens are forced to dump their waste directly into the environment.

As a member of Responsible Care®, CIAC’s U.N.-recognized sustainability initiative, NOVA Chemicals has long worked towards safe, responsible and sustainable chemical manufacturing.

“Our investment in Project STOP demonstrates our unwavering commitment to shaping a world that is even better tomorrow than it is today. We understand that part of this commitment to being ‘better tomorrow’ is our commitment to Responsible Care and Sustainability,” said John Thayer, Senior Vice President, Polyethylene Business at NOVA Chemicals.

“NOVA Chemicals has a long history of respecting our employees, communities and the environment. We are a founding member of Responsible Care and are deeply committed to the industry’s ideals of sustainability.”

CIAC is working with its members and partners, like NOVA, to reduce plastic waste and support the circular economy. In June, partnering with the Canadian Plastics Industry Association, CIAC and its members committed to set ambitious targets to reuse, recycle or recover 100 per cent of plastics packaging by 2040.

Learn more about CIAC’s commitment to supporting the circular economy 

Learn more about Project STOP 

 

Energy and Mines Ministers discuss ways to bolster competitiveness of Canada’s petrochemical sector at 2018 conference

The competitiveness of Canada’s petrochemical sector was on the agenda for the federal, provincial, and territorial energy and mining ministers gathered at the Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference in Iqaluit August 12-14.

Notably, the Gas Processing Management Inc. (GPMi) shared a report surveying the competitiveness landscape for Canada’s petrochemical industry when compared to the U.S. It identified policies and programs that best support future development of this industry in Canada, echoing many of CIAC’s similar findings, and providing further support for the federal government to move on policy actions to mitigate against U.S. tax reform impacts eroding investment competitiveness in Canada, such as the accelerated capital cost allowance.

Read the GPMi report summary draft here

CIAC appears before Senate Committee studying Bill C-74 to discuss carbon-pricing legislation

Isabelle Des Chênes, CIAC Executive Vice-President, and Shannon Watt, Director of Environment and Health Policy, appeared before the Senate Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources on May 3, 2018. Senators are conducting a pre-study of the provisions of Bill C-74, the budget implementation bill, that deal with the government’s plan to price greenhouse gas emissions.

CIAC and its members support efforts to reduce global carbon emissions and have worked collaboratively with both provincial and federal officials to ensure that carbon policies and pricing mechanisms improve environmental performance, avoid double-regulation and maintain Canada’s competitiveness.

Ms. Des Chênes noted that “Canada should support a carbon policy that recognizes emission-intensive, trade-exposed sectors and encourages investments in the Canadian chemistry sector. Additionally, given the incredible investments in innovations and technologies to improve performance around air emissions and climate change, Canada’s proposed output-based allocation process should focus on benchmarking Canadian chemistry operations and performance against global competitors.”

Additionally, Ms. Watt reinforced the point that government needs to provide a comprehensive analysis of the cumulative impacts of the suite of climate change policies including the proposed Clean Fuel Standard.

Watch the CPAC recording: Fuel Suppliers Discuss the Carbon Tax

Panelists discuss Canada’s low carbon future at the Industrial Gas Users Association’s Spring Seminar

CIAC President and CEO Bob Masterson gave a brief overview of chemistry’s role in Canada’s transition to the low-carbon energy future at a panel for the Industrial Gas Users Association Spring Seminar in Montebello, Quebec on Tuesday, May 15.

The topic of the seminar panel was Heavy Industry is Necessary in Canada’s Low Carbon Future. Speakers touched on topics such as the Paris Accord, the Pan-Canadian Framework, as well as near-term and long-term targets.

“Demand for chemistry products are forecast to triple in the next 20 years. And it isn’t hard to see why: the products our members make enable our modern, more sustainable way of life,” Mr. Masterson told the crowd.

“We all need sound policies from our government that encourage growth while meeting the needs of our global commitments to sustainability. The world truly needs more good chemistry – made-in-Canada chemistry – to meet our low-carbon goals.”

The invitation only, two-day event included key natural gas stakeholders including users, pipelines and utilities, marketers, regulators and policy makers. Other participants in the panel discussion included the Mining Association of Canada, the Forest Products Association of Canada and the Canadian Steel Producers Association.

Learn about chemistry’s role in clean tech and the low-carbon economy at the Sixth Estate

Please join Shannon Watt, CIAC Director of Environment and Health Policy, on May 1 for what promises to be a lively discussion on the growing business of clean tech in Canada.

From building insulation and lighter plastics for vehicles, to solar panels and wind turbines, the products that will help move society to a more sustainable future need chemistry. Canada must fully develop the potential of its chemistry industry so it can deliver solutions to reduce emissions both within the industry, throughout Canada and around the world.

Read Shannon’s op-ed on the topic here.

 The Sixth Estate Before the Bell panel discussion

National Arts Centre, 1 Elgin Street, Ottawa Ontario

May 1, 2018. 7:30 to 9a.m. ET

Speakers include:

  • Shannon Watt, CIAC Director of Environment and Health Policy
  • Industry experts from Export Development Canada, Business Development Bank of Canada, Ecotech Quebec and the Globe and Mail.

If you are not able to attend in person, watch live online here.

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