EXPRA’s MD was invited to speak during a panel “Views from Europe towards the Circular Economy” during the 2017 edition of the Canadian Stewardship Conference, this time in Montreal, hosted by EEQ, EXPRA’s member in Quebec, Canada.
Around 600 people from all provinces in Canada but also from the US and Europe attended this event.

The topics of the conference are very similar to those that we are discussing in Europe:

How to bring Circular Economy to fly

The role of EPR within Circular Economy

EMF report on plasitcs

Modulated fees and eco design

The upcoming import stop from China for mixed “recyclables”

Enforcement by the government

Especially with regard to enforcement, it seems that the Canadian provincial authorities are doing their job as they have established strict procedures and dedicated human resources.

Another topic was the start of the EPR system for packaging in British Columbia where the collection and sorting responsibilities are just being shifted from local authorities to RecycleBC, the non-profit industry owned EPR system. A similar approach is currently discussed in Ontario whereas in Quebec, local authorities even control the marketing of the materials.

Nevertheless, our EXPRA member EEQ in Quebec has recently started a new consumer campaign with the aim to make the inhabitants aware that EEQ and its members are financing the separate collection and recycling of packaging and printed paper. They have engaged as spokesperson for this campaign the most know radio and TV moderator who also attended the gala dinner during the conference.

Dr Michiel de Smet from the Ellen Macarthur Foundation presented the work on the “New Plastics Economy” not only during the panel but also in a more private reception. He was stressing that the 3 year project should develop medium and long term vision and change in the way how we use plastics (packaging) but does not have immediate proposals for action. Joachim took the chance for a lot of discussion with Dr de Smet, especially as both also attended the ISWA congress in the beginning of the week.