What’s Been Happening with EPR Lately?Posted: October 19th, 2011
Urban Impact has been front and centre at recent Packaging and Printed Paper EPR consultation sessions. The BC Ministry of Environment is currently in the middle of a fall consultation tour, travelling around the province providing information on the new EPR regulation and engaging stakeholders.
The largest event thus far was held in Richmond in September, co-hosted by the Solid Waste Management Association of North America’s Pacific Chapter. This session was very well attended and included delegates from various local governments, the recycling and retail industries, as well as a wide variety of consultants and one citizens’ initiative.
At some of the more recent events, including one held last week in Burnaby, the Ministry of Environment has been been accompanied by Allen Langdon. Mr. Langdon is the chair of the new Multi Material British Columbia industry stewardship agency, which is taking the lead on the new EPR regulations as a representative of packaging and printed paper producers in BC. At the session, he has been presenting information on MMBC and its role, as well as fielding questions.
The consultation sessions have shown that there is a lot of stakeholder interest in EPR developments, particularly from local governments and the recycling industry, who are concerned about how their roles might change under the new 100% steward-run program.
It is interesting, and perhaps somewhat concerning, that although the aforementioned stakeholders have been out in full force, regular citizens – all the people who actually put their recyclables in the Blue Box and help keep the program going – have been notably absent. It is important that their voices be heard in this debate, as they are really the biggest stakeholders of all.