Recent Reports & Resources


Recent Reports & Resources

When it comes to embracing environmentally friendly technologies, recycling may not be as exciting as solar panels or hybrid cars, but it’s one area where consumers can make a huge difference.

Through municipal recycling programs, specific types of post-consumer plastics are collected, processed for recycling, and used to create an array of second-generation products – everything from fleece jackets and bottles for beverages and detergents to carpeting and even high-end composite lumber for outdoor decking.

There have been many recent announcements on plastics including building a circular economy for plastics, improved recycling through extended producer responsibility (EPR), single-use reduction and many other topics. The following reports are some of the latest updates on the state of the recycling industry.

The Canada Plastic Pact’s Foundational Research and Study on Canadian Plastic Packaging Flows 

The objective was to review the quantity of plastic packaging generated across Canada and to understand how the plastic packaging is being managed. The report provides a system-level view as an anchor point for CPP as it takes steps to meet its targets. The report also provides an overview of factors currently influencing the Canadian plastics packaging landscape, identifies potential solutions, and suggests where focus is necessary to achieve CPP’s goals.
Follow this link to the bottom of the page “Foundational Report

Alberta Collaborative Extended Producer Responsibility (ACES) Study – released March 11, 2020

The Alberta Urban Municipalities Association, along with the Cities of Edmonton and Calgary, producer representatives, and the Canadian Stewardship Services Alliance, released their “Extended Producer Responsibility for Residential Packaging and Paper Products: Alberta Collaborative Extended Producer Responsibility Study.” The study confirms that a made-in-Alberta solution to EPR for packaging and paper products would bring substantial and immediate benefits to Albertans.

The benefits expected from a made-in-Alberta solution to EPR for packaging and paper products include:

  • Reduce the recycling collection services costs that municipalities charge their residents each year by up to $105 million; this is Albertans’ money and it can be reinvested in other municipal services or provided as a cost saving to municipal residents
  • Add $16 million to the Alberta economy every year
  • Gain approximately 220 new jobs in Alberta’s recycling industry
  • Recycle an additional 21,000 tonnes of packaging and paper products each year
  • Reduce CO2 emissions by 72,000 tonnes each year – the equivalent of removing 15,000 cars from the road annually
  • Increase recycling opportunities for rural Alberta and people who live in multi-dwelling residences
  • Make recycling more convenient for Albertans by collecting the same materials province-wide
  • Incentivize industry to design products that are more efficient to collect and recycle
  • Incentivize industry to invest in recycling innovations and infrastructure

CCME Canada-Wide Action Plan on Zero Plastics Waste – released June 26, 2019

The report delves into areas of focus over the next few months to a few years down the road to make changes in how we use and manage plastics. Six areas of focus include:

  • facilitate consistent Extended Producer Responsibility programs;
  • address priority single-use and disposable products;
  • national performance requirements and standards;
  • incentives for a circular economy, infrastructure and innovation investments; and
  • public procurement and green operations.

Economic Study of the Canadian Plastics Industry, Markets and Waste: Summary Report

The report delves into areas of focus over the next few months to a few years down the road to make changes in how we use and manage plastics. Six areas of focus include:

  • Raw material production
  • Plastics products manufacturing
  • End use in key sectors
  • Analysis of end-of-life

Report of the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development: The Last Straw: Turning the Tide on Plastic Pollution in Canada – Released June 2019

A number of recommendations:

  • There is a need for coordinated action
  • Plastic toxicity should be assessed through the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, 1999
  • Standardization is key to increasing plastic recycling
  • Fostering recycling
  • Funding is required to foster innovation to modernize recycling
  • Canadians need better information to be fully engaged
  • The Federal Government can set an example through its procurement

Smart Prosperity Institute – A vision for a circular economy for plastics in Canada 



Canadian Plastics Recycling Reports