The Town of View Royal is ready to toss single-use plastic bags for good, introducing a new bylaw next week that bans local businesses from distributing them.
View Royal’s checkout bag regulation comes into effect on Earth Day—Friday, April 22nd.
The goal is to “reduce the amount of plastic waste entering our landfills and contaminating our environment,” according to town officials.
Staff say the bylaw “essentially mirrors” the checkout bag bylaws already in place in Esquimalt, Saanich, and Victoria and also requires retailers to charge customers no less than $0.25 for paper bags or no less than $2 for reusable bags.
Retailers that don’t follow through will be committing an offence that is punishable under the Community Charter, states the bylaw.
View Royal says paper bags must contain at least 40% post-consumer recycled content, displaying the words “Recyclable” and “Made from 40% post-consumer recycled content” on the outside.
Meanwhile, reusable bags must have handles, be made primarily of cloth or other washable fabric, and be capable of at least 100 uses.
Plastic bag exceptions apply to transporting some products, including dry cleaning or bulky items like linens or bedding that may not easily fit into a reusable bag.
Products like bulk foods, produce, bakery items, frozen foods, small hardware items, prescription drugs, flowers and plants, live fish, and newspapers are also exempt from the new bylaw.