The B.C. Supreme Court has rejected a challenge to the City of Victoria’s proposed plastic bag bylaw.
The bylaw, which is called the “Checkout Bag Regulation Bylaw” states that the purpose of the bylaw is to “regulate the business use of single-use checkout bags to reduce the creation of waste and associated municipal costs, to better steward municipal property, including sewers, streets and parks, and to promote responsible and sustainable business practices that are consistent with the values of the community.”
The bylaw was challenged by the Canadian Plastic Bag Association. However, the court ruled that the new bylaw was enacted in good faith and were within the city’s jurisdiction.
“Although some members of council may have been motivated by broad environment concerns, council’s attention was properly drawn to ways in which discarded plastic bags impact
municipal facilities and services. Council decided that those issues could be addressed by prohibiting a specific form of consumer transaction,” Justice Smith state in the judgment.
Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps said in a release the decision represents an important step in “moving away from unsustainable business practices that create high volumes of waste and litter in our community.”
Starting July 1, single-use plastic bags will be banned in the City of Victoria. There will also be a required charge for paper bags on July 1.
The cost of paper bags and reusable bags will also be going up on Jan. 1, 2019. Paper bags will go up from 15 cents to 25 cents and reusable bags will go from $1 to $2.
The judgment can be read below: