The Government of Canada is moving towards zero plastic waste. As part of these efforts, a draft report has been released that summarizes the current state of the science on the potential impacts of plastic pollution on the environment and human health. The report informs future research and decision-making on plastic pollution in Canada.
In Canada, the main industrial sectors contributing to plastic waste are plastic packaging, followed by the automotive industry.
To improve fuel efficiency through weight reduction, the automotive sector has increased its use of plastics. The vast majority of total plastics used in a vehicle include polyurethane (PU), polypropylene (PP), and polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
PU is used in cushioning applications such as seating, PP in automobile interiors, and PVC is used for faux leather. PC can be used to replace glass in cars, while foam, plastic, and fibre composites can be used in door panels, dashboards, and hoods.
Comments on the draft report, Science Assessment of Plastic Pollution, can be submitted to the Minister of Environment within 60 days of January 30, 2020.
We can anticipate that the government will host future consultations on reducing plastic waste. The automotive industry, as a key contributor to plastic waste, will need to be actively engaged as reduction efforts will likely involve the sector.
Read the draft report on plastic pollution here: