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Victoria moving ahead with new single-use container bylaw

Plastic take-out containers are one of the six items which Canada will ban from manufacturing and import-for-sale beginning Dec. 20, 2022. (Tyler Fleming / CTV News). Plastic take-out containers are one of the six items which Canada will ban from manufacturing and import-for-sale beginning Dec. 20, 2022. (Tyler Fleming / CTV News).
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The City of Victoria is looking to introduce a new bylaw intended to curb the amount of single-use items used by businesses in the municipality.

City council has unanimously decided to direct city staff to prepare the bylaw, which requires businesses to only serve customers with reusable dishware when they are dining in.

Additionally, businesses can only give out single-use food ware accessories, like utensils, straws and stir sticks, if customers request one.

The city says approximately 220,000 single-use items, such as cups and cutlery, are thrown away each day in Victoria, according to data from the Capital Regional District.

"The city’s garbage bins tell a story of needless waste," said Victoria Mayor Marianne Alto in a release Thursday.

"Reusable alternatives to disposable single-use items have a clear benefit to the cleanliness of Victoria streets and parks, and to our environment," she said.

Shane Devereux, owner of businesses Habit Coffee and Sherwood in Victoria, says the move has both environmental and economic benefits.

"Disposable items add up quick, both in the landfill and as a cost; just one disposable coffee cup costs me 20 cents," he said.

"I’m optimistic that these new policies will nudge consumers to think more about their use of convenience items."

The BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association also says it's grateful the city consulted with the industry and came up with a "fair" approach to designing the new bylaw. 

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