Fewer Canadians on board with single-use plastic ban amid COVID-19 pandemic
Plastics are seen being gathered for recycling at a depot in North Vancouver, B.C. Monday, June, 10, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
MONTREAL -- Canadians haven’t been as on board with the prospect of a ban on single-use plastics since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study by Dalhousie University.
Between this year and last, the percentage of Canadians who would support such regulations fell from 70 to 58 per cent, according to the university’s Agri-Food Analytical Science Lab.
“While tighter regulations, and even bans, once seemed like almost consensual action, that support is now being eroded,” said the study’s lead author, Robert Kitz.
Even though the report shows Canadians are still aware of the environmental impact of plastics, 29 per cent of participants estimated they consumed more products packaged in this material during the pandemic.
More than half of the respondents agreed it would be better to wait for the crisis to end before imposing new regulations on plastics.
“COVID-19 may have made some people forget our plastic addiction, but the problem is still with us,” co-author Tony Walker said.
In partnership with polling firm Angus Reid, the lab compared around 1,014 responses from May of last year to 977 from last month. Each sample has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 27, 2020.