Canada will use its presidency of the G7 to try to persuade the world’s richest and most industrialized countries to adopt ambitious goals for plastics recycling and waste reduction.
“We are looking at a zero-plastics-waste charter,” Environment Minister Catherine McKenna said Wednesday from Cancun, Mexico, where she was at an international conference on the world’s oceans.
The idea of a plastics charter was first broached by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau earlier this year. The G7 is to meet in Quebec in June.
McKenna said a plastics charter could go further than the European Union’s plan to recycle at least half of its plastic packaging by 2030.
“We could build on goals like having 100 per cent reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging,” she said in a telephone interview with The Canadian Press.
She said the time is right to take action. Major multinational companies such as Coca-Cola and Unilever have been working toward having all their plastic packaging meet those requirements by 2030.
“There’s momentum from the business community, the environmentalists, from other governments, to actually take action on plastic and keep it out of the ocean.”
Canada will also try to talk other countries into banning microbeads — tiny pieces of plastic found in products such as toothpaste and shower gels.