Atlantic Canada

Atlantic Canada is a leader in managing plastic shopping bags and creating a circular economy.  See why a plastic bag ban is not beneficial or necessary. See how a bag ban can destroy local jobs and innovation.

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Plastic Bags are not a Problem

Plastic shopping bags are not an environmental problem when managed properly. In fact, the alternatives have a greater environmental footprint.

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Bans Don’t Work

There are no winners with bag bans. Bans hurt residents, local jobs and the environment.

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Bag Facts & Fiction

There are too many myths and incorrect and fictitious facts about bags making the right environmental decision very difficult. Get the facts.

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Responsibility

Canadians citizens, retailers, municipalities, recyclers, and the plastics industry take their responsibility for the environment and product stewardship very seriously.

Consideration of plastics bag bans and fees is a complex issue with no easy answers. All bags, whether used as carry bags or to manage household waste, have environmental impacts. We believe that any decision  related to the environment must be based on science and fact and looking at the intended and unintended consequences of that decision.

Science does not support banning plastic shopping bags because the alternatives are worse for the environment.

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA's), and other scientific studies conducted by governments and think tanks around the world show that the alternatives to plastic bags have a larger carbon footprint and global warming potential.

Top 5 Reasons Not To Ban Plastic Shopping Bags

1. Plastic Bags Are The Best Bag Environmentally

Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs) – science -- conducted by governments around the world show that plastic shopping bags are the best environmental choice because they have a lighter environmental footprint.

2. Plastic Bags Are Recyclable

Plastic bags are 100% recyclable unlike reusable bags which cannot be recycled and will end up in landfill. Reusable bags are made up of different materials and must be dissembled before they can be recycled making it cost prohibitive to recycle them.

3. Plastic Bags Are Reusable

Government audits show that plastic shopping bags are multi-purpose, multi-use bags with very high reuse rates ranging from 60-77%.

4. Plastic Bags are an insignificant, tiny fraction of the waste stream.

Plastic bags are not a waste or litter problem. Plastic bags are less than 0.5% of the waste stream and 0.4% of all litter. Banning bags will have almost no impact on windblown litter or stop people from littering.

5. Plastic Bags are Made and Recycled In Canada

Plastic bags are well managed in Canada where people practice the 3R’s. 90% of all grocery bags are made in Canada while reusable bags are imported from Asia where we cannot control the environmental impacts of manufacturing.