Montreal, January 25, 2022 - Équiterre hopes that the Quebec government will act quickly to implement the recommendations in the report that came out of the Bureau d'audiences publiques sur l'environnement (BAPE) consultations on residual waste.
"We’re really happy to see that the Commissioners didn’t fall into the trap of addressing only the symptoms of the problem rather than its causes. The BAPE report emphasizes the fact that the easiest type of waste to manage is the one that is not produced in the first place. It clearly states that if we continue on our current trajectory in Quebec, we’re going to hit a wall. There is a limit to burying our problems. We must drastically change our strategy and ensure that the focus be put on source reduction and reuse," says Amélie Côté, Équiterre’s analyst in reduction at the source.
"The report is very complete, both in how it presents the current situation, and especially in the very varied solutions it proposes to fundamentally transform the way we manage our waste in Quebec," adds the expert.
The vast majority of the recommendations in the report were explicitly proposed in the brief that Équiterre submitted to the BAPE during the consultation period.
Going beyond individual action
Among the solutions proposed in the report, Équiterre commends the proposed structured political approach to tackling the systemic problems of waste management. The Commissioners rightly point out that we’ve gone as far as we can go with voluntary measures.
Équiterre is also pleased to see recommendations about potentially changing RECYC-QUÉBEC’s mission, with more of a focus on reduction at the source and reuse.
"We’re talking about solutions that go beyond individual action and citizen responsibility, which have their limits. The BAPE is proposing regulatory action by the provincial government. For example, eco-fees on single-use products, better access to repair, a ban on certain products or packaging. These are all excellent ways to generate the desired results,” explains Amélie Côté.
Disposal costs are a key
The BAPE report also tackles the impact of disposal costs, which are considered abnormally low in Quebec.
"The report stresses the need to increase disposal fees, which are currently insufficient to act as a deterrent. If it's cheaper to throw away than to reduce or recycle, we won’t be able to make significant progress on the issue," concludes Amélie Côté.
For more information
Anthony Côté Leduc, Media Relations