With COVID-19 infections reaching levels that have not been seen since the height of the first wave in the spring, one would think the Liberals would be singularly focused on managing the pandemic and supporting the economic recovery, not pressing ahead with virtue-signalling environmental policies that will do little to save the planet, but will have an adverse impact on the economy and our battle against the coronavirus. Yet that is exactly what they are doing.
On Wednesday, Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson announced bans on a whole host of single-use plastic products — including grocery bags, straws, stir sticks, cutlery, six-pack rings and certain types of disposable plates and takeout containers — that will come into effect at the end of next year.
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Bans on items such as these have been spreading throughout the developed world for over a decade. The common justification is that too much plastic waste ends up in the environment, especially the oceans. And although the huge volumes of plastic floating around Earth’s oceans is a serious issue, Canada is not the source of the problem, and there’s little evidence to suggest that feel-good bans on straws and shopping bags will do anything to mitigate it.