Ban Single-Use Plastic at the University of Alberta

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Ban single-use plastics and encourage the use of reusable products on the University of Alberta (UofA) campus! 

 

Why should the UofA ban single-use plastic?

  • UBC has banned single-use plastic cutlery and straws, why can't we?
  • Plastics do not biodegrade and take hundreds, if not thousands, of years to break down into microplastics
  • Across the planet:
    • Each year, up to 500 billion plastic bags are used
    • Each year, over 8 million tons of plastic end up in the oceans – equivalent to a full garbage truck every minute
    • 1 million plastic bottles are bought every minute
  • 50% of the plastic Canadians use is single use or disposable
    • Only 9% of plastics are recycled in Canada
    • For years, Canada shipped roughly half of its recycling exports to China, however a ban has now been put in place
    • From 2016 to 2018, a 98% drop in Canadian plastic exports to China was countered by over a 1,000% increase in exports to Malaysia
    • Malaysia banned plastic imports. India did the same.
    • Vietnam imposed restrictions as did Taiwan so now we are left with our own waste and we have no good way to dispose of it!

 

The UofA community can make this change by creating a policy phasing out and, after conducting research, banning single-use plastics on campus. They can do this in addition to offering incentives for using reusable products, implementing various initiatives to make reusable products more convenient, and spreading awareness through research-based education programs. The single-use plastics being phased out will include plastic bottles, cutlery, straws, coffee cups, take-out containers, wrapping, and bags. Single-use options will still be available upon request for those who require them.

This petition will be brought forward in conjunction with a project proposal to collaborate on new and current initiatives. 

Change is happening, but it is happening too slowly. Sign this petition to support a ban of single-use plastics at the UofA.

 It’s time to demand action!

 

References:

CBC News. (2018). Canadian municipalities struggling to find place for recyclables after China restricts foreign waste. Consulted October 7th, 2019. Retrieved from https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/garbage-recycling-china-plastics-canada-1.4586602

Global News Canada. (2019). Is Canada’s recycling industry broken? Consulted October 7th, 2019. Retrieved from https://globalnews.ca/news/5199883/canada-recycling-programs/

The Globe and Mail. (2019, August 16). Canada's planned single-use plastics ban: What we know so far and what you can do to recycle better. Retrieved from https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-canadas-single-use-plastics-ban-what-we-know-so-far-and-what-you-can/.

World Economic Forum. (2016). The New Plastics Economy Rethinking the futureof plastics. Consulted October 7th, 2019. Retrieved from http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_The_New_Plastics_Economy.pdfWorld Health Organization. (2018).

World Environment Day 2018: a call to “Beatplastic pollution”. Consulted October 7th, 2019. Retrieved from http://www.emro.who.int/media/news/world-environment-day-2018-a-call-tO-beat-plastic-pollution.html


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