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Ban on foam cups and containers in Vancouver goes into effect on Jan.


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Ban on foam cups and containers in Vancouver goes into effect on Jan. 1

Violators won't go unpunished down the road, but for now city will focus on education, outreach and support

Updated: December 29, 2019
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Just four of 30 food stalls Postmedia looked at in downtown food courts were still using styrofoam cups and containers. A bylaw takes effect on Jan. 1 banning styrofoam at takeout stalls. PNG

Don’t expect to sip your takeout caffeinated hangover cure from a foam cup on the morning of Jan. 1.

Come New Year’s Day, food and beverages in foam cups and foam take-out containers will be banned from Vancouver’s restaurants and takeout stalls, part of the city’s single-use-item reduction strategy.

The strategy “gets to the heart of our throwaway society,” said Monica Kosmak, its senior project manager. “And it’s one of the first actions in the city of Vancouver’s 2040 strategy, which is to send zero waste to landfills or incinerators by then.”

The city has sent outreach workers to restaurants and takeout venues, and have been told by those still using foam cups and containers they are using up old stock before the ban comes into effect, Kosmak said.

“But many of them are aware and are prepared for the ban.”

A quick survey of 30 food stalls at two big downtown food courts in mid-December revealed just four still using foam.

STORY CONTINUES BELOW

Food courts at lunch time turn out to be packed with harried diners who don’t want to be quoted or have their photo taken, but one gentleman eating a Vietnamese lunch let us take a photo of the foam container his food came in.

“Of course (the ban) is a good idea,” he said. “Any single-use plastic or styrofoam that is kept out of a landfill is obviously a good thing.”

There are still lots of plastic utensils being used, but come April 22 there will be a “by request” bylaw for them, meaning customers will have to ask for them instead of automatically having them provided.

As well come April 22, there will be a requirement for businesses to stock and provide bendable plastic straws for people with disabilities, but a ban on all other plastic straws.

Come Jan. 1, 2021, there will be a ban on plastic shopping bags and a 25-cent fee on disposable cups.

Clear plastic bowls are not being targeted for now.

“The only bylaw that targets containers for bowls is the foam ban,” Kosmak said. “We’re not banning plastic bowls at this time, what we’re doing is asking (food venues) to choose reusable if they can.

“If they have to use a single-use item, they can choose something that can be recycled in the Recycle B.C. residential recycling program … or the city’s green-bin program for compost.”

That would include plastic and plastic-lined paper for recycling, and fibre-pulp paper, moulded-pulp paper, even pressed leaves.

Vancouver will become one of 100 cities in North America to ban foam, and the first in Canada, Kosmak said.

“There are other cities in Canada that have bylaws dealing with shopping bags, 14 of them I think, and about four for plastic straws, two of which are already in place.

“But Vancouver has the most comprehensive strategy for dealing with a wide range of single-use items in Canada.”

There is information online offering reusable, recyclable and compostable packaging alternatives and other helpful hints in English, traditional Chinese, simplified Chinese, Punjabi, Vietnamese and Tagalog at vancouver.ca/foam.

gordmcintyre@postmedia.com

twitter.com/gordmcintyre

 

https://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/ban-on-foam-cups-and-containers-in-vancouver-goes-into-effect-on-jan-1

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1 hour ago, Crabcakes said:

Any container designed for single use is a bad idea imo.

 

Recycling is great but in terms of plasitcs it is not getting done because it is cheaper to produce new plastic things than to recycle them.

 

 

Well, not ANY container.. I wouldn't want to reuse one of these xD

 

Spoiler

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New York State is losing plastic bags beginning in the new year. 

 

Fortunately you can buy rolls of them on Amazon and they're only about the size of a roll of toilet paper.  I'm gonna buy a roll and stick it in my glove compartment and tear off a few when I go to the store.  ....and yes, I am selfish.  I'll let you Millennials fish my shopping bags out of the ocean after I'm dead.

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32 minutes ago, SabreFan1 said:

New York State is losing plastic bags beginning in the new year. 

 

Fortunately you can buy rolls of them on Amazon and they're only about the size of a roll of toilet paper.  I'm gonna buy a roll and stick it in my glove compartment and tear off a few when I go to the store.  ....and yes, I am selfish.  I'll let you Millennials fish my shopping bags out of the ocean after I'm dead.

Ok boomer!

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3 minutes ago, SabreFan1 said:

Are you using that phrase properly?  I thought that was basically used when people are complaining about the younger generations?

Well since you said you will let millennials fish the bags out.
I figured that’s something that a boomer would say, although I am pretty sure you are not that old.

 

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5 minutes ago, CBH1926 said:

Well since you said you will let millennials fish the bags out.
I figured that’s something that a boomer would say, although I am pretty sure you are not that old.

Nope.  I'm a Gen X'er.   According to the Einsteins who came up with that silly comeback though, it can be used against any aged person whether they are a Baby Boomer or not.

 

Sadly a Millennial aged lawmaker in, I think it was New Zealand, actually said that in a debate on the Parliament floor.  If my congressman was ever brain dead enough to say that during a debate on the floor, I'd actively work against his re-election the next time he was up for it.

Edited by SabreFan1
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On 12/29/2019 at 7:54 PM, SabreFan1 said:

New York State is losing plastic bags beginning in the new year. 

 

Fortunately you can buy rolls of them on Amazon and they're only about the size of a roll of toilet paper.  I'm gonna buy a roll and stick it in my glove compartment and tear off a few when I go to the store.  ....and yes, I am selfish.  I'll let you Millennials fish my shopping bags out of the ocean after I'm dead.

Or buy a tote bag to keep in your glove compartment? Great way to save money FYI.

 

Then again, I really don't know if you're being sarcastic or not - hard to tell by reading text.

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2 hours ago, KoreanHockeyFan said:

Or buy a tote bag to keep in your glove compartment? Great way to save money FYI.

 

Then again, I really don't know if you're being sarcastic or not - hard to tell by reading text.

I'm just being a d*ck really. :lol:  I go to restaurants a lot and I get a good portion of my groceries through Amazon.  I'll probably just use the paper bags that will be in the stores now for when I need fresh groceries like vegetables and fruits and other perishables.

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23 minutes ago, SabreFan1 said:

I'm just being a d*ck really. :lol:  I go to restaurants a lot and I get a good portion of my groceries through Amazon.  I'll probably just use the paper bags that will be in the stores now for when I need fresh groceries like vegetables and fruits and other perishables.

Why don't you just bring your own bags each time you go to the grocery.. pretty simple really....

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Just now, kingofsurrey said:

Why don't you just bring your own bags each time you go to the grocery.. pretty simple really....

I could, but I'm not as environmentally conscious as I was when I was younger.  The US is much better about re-planting trees these days, but is still a little lax on the crap that paper mills put into the water.

 

If it becomes easier to just use a cloth bag, I'll switch.  My choice will rest more on convenience than environmental reasons though.

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