United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Canada

Mr., Mme Chairperson,
The Government of Canada recognizes environmentally sound waste management, both
domestically and internationally, as an important element in health and environmental
risk management, in support of sustainable development. Canada would like to take the
opportunity to describe two initiatives dealing with sustainable waste management in our
country, showing how municipal, provincial, territorial and federal governments have
been working together to address waste and end-of-life products.
The first example is Canada?s experience with Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR).
EPR is a policy approach where the producer?s responsibility for its product is extended
to the post-consumer stage of a product?s life cycle. Canada?s first experience with EPR
came as an end of life paint stewardship program, launched by the province of British
Columbia in 1994. From this first experience, EPR programs have grown across the
country and now include over 50 operational programs covering a wide range of products
such as used tires, electronics and paint, with more under development.
In October 2009, Environment ministers from Canada?s federal, provincial and territorial
governments approved a Canada-wide Action Plan for EPR, which commits jurisdictions
to develop harmonized legislation and regulations for a number of product categories,
such as packaging, electronics, household hazardous waste, construction and demolition
waste and appliances. Consistent with this Action Plan, the Government of Canada is
considering developing a national EPR regulation to manage end-of-life ozone depleting
substances and their halocarbon equivalents in both stationary and mobile refrigeration
equipment. A national EPR program is also being considered to manage end-of-life
mercury containing lamps.
The second example is our work in the field of electronic waste, where Canada is taking
action both domestically and internationally to encourage their environmentally sound
management. At the domestic level, a growing number of regulations requiring EPR
programs and other policies have been implemented to better manage end-of-life
electronic and electrical equipment. At the international level, Canada has been actively
supporting the Partnership for Action on Computing Equipment (PACE) under the Basel
Convention.
The Government of Canada is also undertaking a review of its regulations on the export
and import of hazardous waste and hazardous recyclable materials, with the objective of
strengthening control mechanisms for the transboundary movement of hazardous waste.
These activities support our commitments to advance work under the Basel Convention
and to support the environmentally sound management of wastes. [Consultation
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documents are available on Environment Canada?s CEPA Registry website
www.ec.gc.ca/ceparegistry]
In closing, Canada recognizes that sound integrated waste management is an important
and necessary component to achieve sustainable development and Canada actively
supports work in this area. Canada also recognizes the need to integrate the principles of
sustainable development into policies and programmes in support of the Millennium
Development Goals. For more information, please visit the UNCSD-18 website where
you will find Canada?s thematic Report on Waste Management.
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