News / Edmonton

Bag ban a no-go in Edmonton

Edmonton city council has already looked at — and rejected — a proposal to ban plastic bags in the city, and there seems to be little support to revisit the issue in light of Toronto’s move to ban the bags.

“We tried it a few years ago and it didn’t go very far,” said Coun. Ben Henderson. The previous council asked for a report from administration, and it found little support for a ban. Edmonton already has one of the most comprehensive recycling programs in the country; in fact, the city makes money on selling the recycled plastic, he said.

But that doesn’t mean it’s a bad idea in his view.

“I’d go back again” if there seemed to be support, he said. But you have to choose what hill you want to die on, and banning plastic bags isn’t it, he said.

Coun. Kerry Diotte, on the other hand, thinks it’s a bad idea at any time.

“I don’t think Edmonton is big on bans. We like to use the carrot rather than the stick.”

He sees retailers and the public moving away from plastic bags voluntarily, and that there is no need for a “draconian” law banning bags.

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