Reducing single-use plastics and takeaway items - city consultation

Reducing single-use and takeaway items supports recommendations established in the City’s Long Term Waste Management Strategy. In July 2018, City Council directed Solid Waste Management Services to consult with residents and stakeholder groups on single-use plastics and takeaway items for targeted reduction and solicit input on policy tools. Reducing waste in our communities, and across our city, is a key component in addressing the climate crisis.

The City of Toronto is undertaking a second phase of consultation on how to reduce the use of single-use and takeaway items. A single-use or takeaway item is any product designed for a single use after which it is disposed of in the garbage, Blue Bin (recycling) or Green Bin (organics).

Last year, residents and stakeholders were asked to identify which single-use or takeaway items they were most interested in addressing and their preferred approaches for reducing or promoting reuse of these items.

This phase of consultation will seek feedback on specific items targeted for reduction, such as single-use eating utensils, plastic and paper bags, hot and cold drink cups, straws and foam cups and food containers.

In addition to voluntary measures, the possible mandatory approaches the City is consulting on include bylaws that mandate fees on the distribution of specific single-use and takeaway items, by-request/ask-first bylaws (i.e. customer asks first or is asked if they would like an item) and bylaws that would ban the distribution and use of specific single-use and takeaway items at certain establishments.

The public will have an opportunity to provide their feedback by attending a public event, watching a live webcast, or joining a telephone/web town hall. Residents will also be able to share their views through an online survey. A series of consultation meetings will be held to engage sectors including restaurants, retail and accessibility.

Public Event

Tuesday, September 24

7 to 8:30 p.m. (doors open at 6:30 p.m.)
Toronto City Hall, Council Chamber, 100 Queen St. W.
If you are unable to attend in person, the event will webcast online.

Telephone/Web Town Halls

Thursday, October 10 from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

Thursday, October 24 from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
The same information will be presented on both dates.

Online Survey

An online survey will be available from September 25 to November 4.

Those who would like to attend the consultation or participate in the town halls are asked to register in advance. Links to register, watch the live webcast and take the survey are available at http://www.toronto.ca/single-use.

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Reducing single-use and takeaway items supports recommendations established in the City’s Long Term Waste Management Strategy. In July 2018, City Council directed Solid Waste Management Services to consult with residents and stakeholder groups on single-use plastics and takeaway items for targeted reduction and solicit input on policy tools.

The input received from these consultations will help the City create a future Single-Use and Takeaway Item Reduction Strategy.  Following Phase 2 consultations, City staff will further refine any proposed initiatives and report to the Infrastructure and Environment Committee in 2020.

For those unable to attend a consultation, input can be emailed to wastestrategy@toronto.ca.