Transcript: Revamping the Blue Box | Aug 14, 2019

Nam sits in the studio. She's in her early forties, with shoulder length curly brown hair. She's wearing glasses and a blue blazer over a white shirt.

A caption on screen reads "Revamping the Blue Box. Nam Kiwanuka, @namshine, @theagenda."

Nam says LATE LAST MONTH, THE
PROVINCE RECEIVED THE FINAL
REPORT OF ITS SPECIAL ADVISOR ON
RECYCLING AND PLASTIC WASTE.
IT OFFERED SEVERAL
RECOMMENDATIONS AIMED AT AN
OVERHAUL, THAT PUTS PRODUCERS IN
CHARGE OF MANAGING BLUE BOX
WASTE.
WITH US NOW FOR MORE:
JEFF YUREK, MINISTER OF THE
ENVIRONMENT, CONSERVATION AND
PARKS AND THE MPP FOR
ELGIN-MIDDLESEX-LONDON.

Yurek is in his fifties, clean-shaven, with short brown hair. He's wearing a dark gray suit, white shirt, and patterned gray tie.

Nam continues HI.
IT'S NICE TO MEET YOU.

Yurek says GREAT TO MEET YOU.

Nam says ESPECIALLY NICE
SINCE YOU'RE COMING FROM MY
HOMETOWN OF LONDON, ONTARIO.

Yurek says IT'S A GREAT PART OF ONTARIO.

Nam says WHY DOES ONTARIO'S
BLUE BIN PROGRAM NEED TO BE
REVAMPED.

The caption changes to "Jeff Yurek. Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks."
Then, it changes again to "What's wrong with the recycling system?"

Yurek says WELL, YOU KNOW, LAST FALL WE
PUT OUT OUR MADE-IN-ONTARIO
ENVIRONMENT PLAN AND PART OF
THAT WAS DEALING WITH LITTER AND
WASTE AND OUR LANDFILLS AND
PLASTICS.
AFTER DOING A REVIEW, WE FOUND
THAT THE RECYCLING PROGRAM ISN'T
ACCOMPLISHING WHAT ONTARIANS
THINK IT IS ACCOMPLISHING AND
HAD DAVID LINDSAY DO A SPECIAL
REPORT THAT WAS RELEASED A FEW
WEEKS AGO.
BUT BASICALLY WHAT'S COME
FORWARD IS THAT RECYCLING IS
STAGNANT IN THIS PROVINCE.
70 PERCENT OF OUR GARBAGE IS
STILL GOING TO THE GARBAGE, IT'S
NOT BEING DIVERTED INTO
RECYCLING.

Nam says IS IT 30 PERCENT, UP
TO 30 PERCENT?

Yurek says 30 PERCENT IS GETTING
RECYCLED, BUT THE INTERESTING
PART IS, IN THE BLUE BOX ITSELF,
30 PERCENT OF WHAT'S PUT IN THAT
BLUE BOX ENDS UP IN THE LANDFILL
ANYWAY.
SO THERE'S SOMETHING AMISS WITH
OUR RECYCLING PROGRAM.
IT'S NOT DELIVERING THE RESULTS
THAT AVERAGE ONTARIANS WOULD
THINK WOULD BE DELIVERED.
SO IT'S TIME TO MAKE A CHANGE
AND IT'S TIME TO MOVE TO REDUCE
THE PLASTICS IN OUR LANDFILLS.

Nam says AND THERE'S SOMETHING
THAT MR. LINDSAY REPEATEDLY SAYS IN THE REPORT IS THAT THIS IS A
VERY COMPLEX ISSUE.
SO DO YOU HAVE A TIME LINE ON
HOW YOU WANT TO MAKE THESE CHANGES?

The caption changes to "Jeff Yurek, @JeffYurekMPP."

Yurek says WELL, WE'RE NOT GOING TO DO
THEM QUICKLY.
I THINK MUNICIPALITIES HAVE
DIFFICULTY DOLING WITH THE
RECYCLING PROGRAM SINCE IT
STARTED.
I KNOW THEY'VE BEEN ASKING FOR
YEARS UPON YEARS FOR CHANGE.
WE'RE GOING TO CONTINUE OUR
CONSULTATIONS WITH THE
PRODUCERS, WHO WE ARE GOING TO
MOVE THE COSTS OF THE PROGRAM TO
THE PRODUCERS, WE'RE GOING TO
DEAL WITH MUNICIPALITIES AND
WHAT'S THE BEST WAY FORWARD, AND
ALSO DEAL WITH ONTARIANS.
BUT THE MAIN PART WE WANT TO GET
ACROSS TO PEOPLE IS THOSE HAVING
A BLUE BOX PROGRAM TODAY WON'T
NOTICE A DIFFERENCE IN THE
PICKUP OF THEIR RECYCLABLES.
ONLY THAT THEY'LL BE ABLE TO PUT
MORE IN AND THEY'LL KNOW WHAT
CAN GO IN THE BLUE BOX.

The caption changes to "Connect with us: Twitter: @theagenda; Facebook, agendaconnect@tvo.org, Instagram."

Nam says I WANT TO TALK MORE
ABOUT THE REPORT ITSELF.

Yurek says SURE.

Nam says WE FIND OUT IN THIS
REPORT THAT AT LEAST 30 PERCENT
OF WHAT WE THINK IS BEING
RECYCLED IS ACTUALLY ENDING UP
IN THE LANDFILL, AND YOUR
MINISTRY COMMISSIONED THIS
REPORT AND IT HIGHLIGHTS THE
FACT THAT, YOU KNOW, WE BELIEVE
THAT, QUOTE, WHEN WE PUT
SOMETHING IN THE BLUE BOX, THAT
THEY'RE REDUCING LITTER AND
WASTE AND IMPROVING THE
ENVIRONMENT.
WHY ISN'T THAT HAPPENING RIGHT
NOW?

Yurek says WELL, THERE ARE A NUMBER OF
FACTORS.
ONE, THEY CAN PUT THE WRONG ITEM
INTO A BLUE BOX WHICH
CONTAMINATES THE BOX, SO IT
CAN'T GO FURTHER IN RECYCLING,
WHETHER IT'S DIRTY OR JUST THE
WRONG ITEM.
NUMBER TWO, THERE'S 240
DIFFERENT RECYCLING PROGRAMS IN
THIS PROVINCE.
SO TO KEEP TRACK OF WHAT GOES IN
THE BOX IS QUITE CONFUSING TO
PEOPLE.
YOU KNOW, I REMEMBER MY MOM
TRIED TO RECYCLE, BUT IT WAS
JUST TOO CONFUSING.
YOU HAVE TO CLEAN THIS.
CAN THIS GO IN THERE?
SHE ALWAYS SAID, FORGET IT.
I'M NOT GOING TO RECYCLE.

Nam says WELL, I'M GLAD YOU
BROUGHT THIS UP BECAUSE WE HAVE
THIS GRAPH UP.

A slate appears on screen, with the title "The coffee cup dilemma in the GTA."

The slate shows a list of municipalities, comparing what bin paper cups and plastic lids should go in each of them.

Nam says SO DEPENDING ON... AND WE'RE
GOING TO CALL THIS A COFFEE CUP
DILEMMA.
DEPENDING WHERE YOU'RE LIVING,
WE HAVE THE MUNICIPALITY, THE
PAPER CUP AND THE PLASTIC LID,
AND THESE GO INTO DIFFERENT
PLACES.
IF YOU LIVE IN HAMILTON, THAT
PAPER CUP WOULD GO IN THE BLUE
BIN AND THE PLASTIC CUP WOULD IN
THE GARBAGE.
IN BURLINGTON, IT'S THE GREEN
BIN AND THE PLASTIC LID GOES
INTO THE BLUE BOX.
IN MISSISSAUGA, THE PAPER CUP
GOES INTO THE GARBAGE AND THE
PLASTIC LID ALSO GOES INTO THE
GARBAGE.
HERE IN TORONTO, THE PAPER CUP
GOES INTO THE GARBAGE, AND THE
BLUE BOX, BECAUSE BLACK PLASTIC
IS NOT ACCEPTED.
IN MARKHAM, THE PAPER CUP GOES
INTO THE BLUE BOX AND THE
PLASTIC LID GOES INTO THE
GARBAGE, WHICH IS SO CONFUSING.
WHY IS IT SET UP LIKE THIS?

Yurek says BECAUSE THE MUNICIPALITIES
WERE IN CHARGE OF THE PROGRAM.
SO EACH MUNICIPALITY SET OUT
WHAT WAS BEST FOR THEIR
COMMUNITIES AND WHAT THEY COULD
RECYCLE.
UNFORTUNATELY, THAT DOESN'T...
OBVIOUSLY DOESN'T WORK.
YOU GET A MISH-MASH OF WHAT CAN
GO IN THE BLUE BOX.
SO STANDARDIZING IT IS PROBABLY
ONE OF THE KEY POINTS OF GOING
FORWARD WITH THIS PROGRAM.
SO EVERYONE KNOWS WHAT GOES IN
THE BLUE BOX AND WHAT CAN BE
RECYCLED.

Nam says I LIVE IN MISSISSAUGA.
I WORK IN TORONTO.
AND I'VE BEEN DOING IT ALL
WRONG.
COULD THIS BE ONE OF THE REASONS
WHY SO MUCH OF WHAT WE RECYCLE
ENDS UP IN THE LANDFILL?

Yurek says IT'S PROBABLY ONE OF THE
REASONS.
YOU KNOW, THE OTHER ONE I
MENTIONED WAS CONTAMINATION,
WHERE THEY DIDN'T PROPERLY WASH
BECAUSE CERTAIN RECYCLING AGENTS
ONLY TAKE CLEAN PLASTIC OR TIN
CANS, WHAT HAVE YOU.
SO IT'S A NUMBER OF THINGS.
THE OTHER IS COST.
I MEAN, MUNICIPALITIES PAY
APPROXIMATELY 50 PERCENT
STEWARDSHIP ONTARIO THROUGH THE
PRODUCERS PAY THE OTHER
50 PERCENT.
THERE'S ONLY SO MUCH THAT A
MUNICIPALITY CAN DO WITH THAT
AMOUNT OF MONEY SO...

Nam says THIS SYSTEM WAS SET UP
IN THE 1980s RIGHT?

The caption changes to "The economics have changed."

Yurek says IT FIRST STARTED IN
KITCHENER, ONTARIO, IN THE EARLY
1980S, AND OVER TIME IT
DEVELOPED INTO A PROVINCE-WIDE
PROGRAM, ALTHOUGH NOT EVERY
COMMUNITY DOES HAVE A BLUE BOX
PROGRAM.

Nam says AND OBVIOUSLY SINCE
THEN, WE ARE USING DIFFERENT
PLASTICS.
WE ARE USING DIFFERENT... MAYBE
ITEMS THAT WERE NOT MAYBE ON
THAT LIST BACK IN THE 1980S.
IS THAT ANOTHER REASON?

Yurek says YEAH, SURE.
I MEAN PRINTED PAPER WAS
PROBABLY THE NUMBER ONE
RECYCLABLE AND THEN THERE WAS
TIN CANS, POP CANS, ET CETERA.
NOW WE'VE MOVED TO A WHOLE
DIFFERENT TYPE OF PACKAGING,
DIFFERENT TYPES OF PLASTICS ARE
NOW AVAILABLE, AND I THINK AT
THAT TIME, YOU KNOW, THE
PRODUCERS OF THIS WASTE, THIS
PLASTIC HAD NO INCENTIVE TO
ACTUALLY MAKE CHANGES TO MAKE
THEIR PRODUCTS MORE RECYCLABLE
OR MORE USER FRIENDLY IN THE
RECYCLING, THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY
WE WANT TO CREATE.
SO I THINK THAT WAS ONE OF THE
MAJOR PROBLEMS.
SO MOVING FROM A MUNICIPAL PAY
AND CONTROL, HALF OF IT, TO A
PRODUCER CONTROL AND ENTIRELY
PAY FOR THE SYSTEM WILL
INCENTIVIZE THEM TO CHANGE THE
WAY THEY PACKAGE MATERIAL.

Nam says BY THAT I'M GUESSING
YOU MEAN YOU CAN USE A PLASTIC
FOR ONE THING, BUT THEN IT CAN
HAVE LIKE ANOTHER LIFE AS
SOMETHING ELSE?

The caption changes to "tvo.org/theagenda; agendaconnect@tvo.org."

Yurek says CERTAINLY.
I MEAN, YEAH.
THAT'S THE WAY IT IS, TO REUSE,
TO REPURPOSE THAT PLASTIC INTO
SOME OTHER FORM, BUT ALSO THE
PRODUCERS OF THE PLASTIC CAN NOW
START CHANGING WHAT PRODUCT
THEY'RE CREATING.
THEY CAN USE RECYCLABLE
MATERIALS.
THEY CAN USE... OR USE PRODUCTS
THAT ARE EASIER TO RECYCLE, AND
THEN THEY CREATE THE SYSTEM IN
ORDER TO HAVE THOSE PRODUCTS
REINTEGRATED BACK IN OUR ECONOMY.

Nam says WHAT IS THE SECONDARY
MARKET FOR THE PLASTIC WASTE
COLLAPSED?

The caption changes to "Jeff Yurek. PC MPP, Elgin-Middlesex-London."

Yurek says THE MAIN REASON IS CHINA HAS
REALLY DRASTICALLY REDUCED
ACCEPTING OUR PLASTICS.
THEY PUT A LOT OF PROVISIONS.
THEY REALLY WANT IT CLEANED UP.
SO THEREFORE THE MARKET IS
MAINLY BEING DRIVEN OFFSHORE.
AND AGAIN I REFER BACK TO THIS
REPORT.
IF WE MOVE THE RESPONSIBILITY TO
THE PRODUCERS ON THE RECYCLABLE
PRODUCT, AT THE END OF THE DAY I
BELIEVE THERE'S GOING TO BE
AFTER-MARKET GROWTH IN THOSE
ECONOMIES TO CREATE RECYCLING
INDUSTRY WITHIN ONTARIO BECAUSE
THE INCENTIVE WILL BE THERE FOR
THOSE BUSINESSES TO EXPAND.

Nam says WELL, WE'VE MENTIONED
THAT ONE OF THE FINDINGS AND
PROBABLY THE PRIMARY FINDING IN
THIS REPORT IS UP TO 30 PERCENT
OF WHAT GOES IN THE BLUE BINS
ENDS UP IN THE LANDFILL.
WHERE ARE THE LANDFILLS THAT
THIS WASTE IS ENDING UP IN?

Yurek says MUNICIPALITIES HAVE THEIR
VARIOUS LANDFILLS THROUGHOUT THE
PROVINCE.
TORONTO'S LANDFILL IS ACTUALLY
IN MY RIDING, IN SOUTHOLD,
ONTARIO.
SO THE PRODUCT IS GETTING INTO
OUR LANDFILLS AND AS IT BREAKS
DOWN AND DEGRADES, IT CREATES
METHANE GAS WHICH IS A MORE
POTENT GREENHOUSE GAS THAN CO2.
SO IT'S NOT A WIN FOR THE
ENVIRONMENT TO CONTINUE TO HAVE
PLASTICS GETTING INTO OUR
LANDFILL.
WE WANT TO REDUCE THAT ALMOST TO
ZERO AS WE GO FORWARD.

Nam says I KNOW PEOPLE DON'T
LIKE THE IDEA OF THEIR RECYCLING
ENDING UP IN LANDFILLS.
BUT IS IT POSSIBLE THAT
SOMETHING ENDING UP IN THE
LANDFILL DOES LESS HARM TO THE
ENVIRONMENT THAN BEING SHIPPED
SOMEWHERE OVERSEAS?

The caption changes to "Watch us anytime: tvo.org, Twitter: @theagenda, Facebook Live, YouTube."

Yurek says YOU KNOW, I'VE HEARD SOME
ECONOMISTS HAVE THAT DISCUSSION
THAT IT'S BETTER FOR JUST... TO
LET THE PLASTIC GO TO THE
LANDFILL AS OPPOSED TO THE
GREENHOUSE GASES AND THE
ENVIRONMENTAL FOOTPRINT THAT'S
CREATED TO SHIP OFFSHORE.
HOWEVER, I THINK THAT WOULD BE A
WAY TO THROW THE BABY OUT WITH
THE BATHWATER, SO TO SPEAK, AND
THE FACT THAT YOU COULD ACTUALLY
REMOVE... PUT THE MANAGEMENT OF
THE BLUE BOX SYSTEM AND THE
COSTS ONTO THE PRODUCERS WHICH
WILL INCENTIVIZE THEM TO
DECREASE THEIR PACKAGING BUT
ALSO HOPEFULLY CREATE A NEW
ECONOMY WITHIN THE RECYCLING
BUSINESS WITHIN ONTARIO AND STIR
THAT UP.

Nam says BUT ISN'T THAT WHAT
THEY TRIED TO DO BEFORE, WAS TO
CREATE AN ECONOMY WITH
RECYCLING, HAVING AN INDUSTRY?

Yurek says THEY DID DO THAT.
BUT, HOWEVER, THE PRODUCERS HAD
NO CONTROL OF THE SYSTEM.
IT WAS MUNICIPAL CONTROLLED.
PRODUCERS PAY BASICALLY
50 PERCENT OF THE COST.
SO IF THE PRODUCERS HAVE NO
CONTROL OVER WHAT IS PRODUCED
AND THE RECYCLING AND WHAT THE
END PRODUCT ARE, THEN IT WOULD
BE PRETTY HARD TO CREATE A
CONSISTENT PRODUCT IN ORDER TO
HAVE A RECYCLING PROGRAM.
IF WE MOVE THE COSTS AND THE
CONTROL OVER TO THE PRODUCERS,
AS I SAID BEFORE, THEY'LL CREATE
A RECYCLABLE PRODUCT THAT CAN BE
REUSED IN THE SYSTEM, AND THAT
SHOULD CREATE A RECYCLING
INDUSTRY.
I DON'T... I'M NOT ONE FOR
SAYING, GET RID OF THE RECYCLING
PROGRAM, JUST THROW IT IN THE
LANDFILL.
I DON'T THINK THAT'S A SOLUTION.
I DON'T THINK LANDFILLS ARE A
SOLUTION DOWN THE ROAD.
THE LEAST WE CAN DO IS START TO
MINIMIZE PLASTICS IN OUR
LANDFILLS.

Nam says I KNOW THE IDEAL WOULD
BE TO HAVE 100 PERCENT OF
EVERYTHING THAT WE PUT TO
RECYCLING GETS RECYCLED.

Yurek says SURE.

Nam says WE'RE TALKING UP TO 30 E
LANDFILL.
THAT MEANS THAT 70 PERCENT IS
GETTING RECYCLED.
DOESN'T THAT MEAN THAT RECYCLING
IS ACTUALLY HELPING?

Yurek says IT'S HELPING TO A CERTAIN
EXTENT.
BUT, I MEAN, MY DAUGHTER GOES TO
SCHOOL AND I'M NOT HAPPY WITH 7.
I LIKE TO SEE HER GET A LITTLE
BIT HIGHER.
AND WE SHOULD HAVE PROGRAMS IN
ONTARIO THAT ACHIEVE THE BEST
POSSIBLE TARGET WE CAN ACHIEVE.
IF IT'S PLATEAUED AT 70 PERCENT,
TO ME THE SYSTEM NEEDS SOME
FIXING AND THAT'S WHAT WE'RE
GOING TO BE DOING WITH THE
RECYCLING PROGRAM IN ONTARIO.
SO THAT AT THE END OF THE DAY
MAYBE WE CAN HIT A HIGHER TARGET
AND DIVERT THAT MUCH MORE
PLASTIC FROM HITTING OUR
LANDFILLS.

Nam says WE ALSO HEARD THAT
SOMETIMES THE STUFF ENDS UP IN
THE LAND FULL BECAUSE IT'S BEEN
CONTAMINATED.

Yurek says RIGHT.

Nam says WHY IS CONTAMINATION
SUCH A BIG ISSUE?

Yurek says WELL, I MEAN, IF CERTAIN
RECYCLING... LIKE, CHINA HAS
PULLED BACK BECAUSE THERE'S
ADDED COST TO CLEAN THE PRODUCT
BEFORE YOU HEAD IT TO RECYCLE
AND-OR IT COULD CONTAMINATE THE
DIFFERENT TYPES OF PLASTICS THAT
COULD BE RECYCLED.
SO THE MORE WE CAN DO WITH
REGARDS TO LETTING PEOPLE KNOW
WHAT CAN BE RECYCLED, LETTING
THE INDUSTRY DESIGN A PRODUCT
THAT CAN BE RECYCLED, THE BETTER
RESULTS WE'LL HAVE AT THE END OF
THE DAY, THE LESS CHANCE WE'LL
HAVE FOR CONTAMINATION OR HAVING
TO SORT SO MUCH AT THAT END AND
THAT SHOULD REDUCE COSTS AND
HOPEFULLY STIMULATE THIS
ECONOMY.

Nam says COULD AN INITIAL STEP
BE TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE KNOW
HOW TO CLEAN THEIR RECYCLES OR
WHAT SHOULD GO IN THE BIN?

Yurek says I THINK EVERYBODY WANTS TO BE PART OF THE RECYCLING.
I THINK WE ALL FEEL BAD IF WE
DON'T RECYCLE.
SO WE LIKE TO DO IT RIGHT.
LET'S MAKE IT AS SIMPLE AS
POSSIBLE.
THAT'S PART OF STANDARDIZING
THE PRODUCT GOING FORWARD.
WE'LL HAVE AN EDUCATIONAL
PROGRAM GOING FORWARD.
ONCE THE PRODUCT IS
STANDARDIZED, THEN HOW TO
RECYCLE AND HOW TO DO IT
PROPERLY.

Nam says WHEN THE BLUE BIN
PROGRAM BEGAN AT LEAST IN
TORONTO THE GLASS BOTTLES AND
TINS WERE SEPARATED FROM THE
PAPER STREAM, BUT THEN WE MOVED
TO A SYSTEM WHERE WE NOW RECYCLE
THEM TOGETHER.
DO YOU THINK THAT THAT WAS A MISTAKE?

The caption changes to "Subscribe to The Agenda Podcast: tvo.org/theagenda."

Yurek says YOU KNOW, I THINK THAT'S UP
TO THE RECYCLING INDUSTRY.
I TOURED A RECYCLING PLANT UP IN
MUSKOKA JUST LAST WEEK AND THE
SYSTEM THEY DEVELOPED TO
SEPARATING PLASTICS AND THE
PLASTIC BOTTLES AND THE TIN CANS
IS JUSTICE USING A MAGNET.
IT JUST... IT SEPARATES QUITE
EASILY.
I DON'T KNOW IF THAT'S A
MISTAKE.
BUT I THINK THE KEY TO THAT WAS
THE FACT THAT MUNICIPALITIES
WERE CONTROLLING WHAT WAS GOING
IN THE RECYCLING BOX AND WHAT
FIT BEST FOR THAT MUNICIPALITY
AND SORTING OR GETTING RID OF
THEIR RECYCLED PRODUCTS.
AGAIN, I THINK IF WE GO BACK TO
THE PRODUCERS CONTROLLING THE
SYSTEM, THE DEVELOPMENT OF HOW
THE RECYCLING WILL HAPPEN I
THINK WE'LL GET THE BEST MIX ON
HOW TO RECYCLE OUR PRODUCT.

Nam says THIS REPORT SAYS THAT
THERE IS A CONSENSUS AMONG
MUNICIPALITIES AND PRODUCERS,
WHICH IS THAT PRODUCERS OF
PACKAGING WASTE SHOULD BE
RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DISPOSAL AND
RECYCLING OF THAT PACKAGING, RIGHT?

Yurek says RIGHT.

Nam says HOW WOULD THAT CHANGE
THE SYSTEM AS IT STANDS RIGHT NOW?

The caption changes to "Producer responsibility."

Yurek says RIGHT NOW THE SYSTEM IS SET
UP, THE MUNICIPALITIES PAY UP TO
50 PERCENT OF THE COST, MAYBE IT
GOES UP TO 60 PERCENT.
THEY CONTROL WHAT IS RECYCLED,
HOW IT'S RECYCLED, THE PICKUP
AND WHERE IT GETS SHIPPED OFF.
STEWARDSHIP ONTARIO, THROUGH
FEES THROUGH THE PRODUCERS, PAY
THE OTHER PORTION, 50 PERCENT.
SO THE WAY IT'S GOING TO FLIP
NOW IS MUNICIPALITIES, THE
TAXPAYERS OF MUNICIPALITIES WILL
HAVE A SAVINGS BECAUSE THEY
WON'T HAVE THAT COST ANYMORE ON
THE RECYCLING PROGRAM.
THE PRODUCERS WILL BE PAYING FOR
AND CONTROLLING THE RECYCLING SYSTEM.

Nam says I HEAR... BECAUSE I
THINK ONE OF THE THINGS THAT
PEOPLE MIGHT BE WORRIED ABOUT IS
THAT WHAT WOULD STOP THE
PRODUCERS FROM TRANSFERRING THAT
COST TO CONSUMERS?

Yurek says WELL, I THINK THERE'S A
NUMBER OF ITEMS.
CERTAINLY WE'LL HAVE THOSE
CONVERSATIONS WITH THEM.
BUT I THINK INDUSTRY, PRODUCERS
ARE INTO SAVING MONEY WITH THE
WAY THEY OPERATE THEIR BUSINESSES.
I THINK THAT'S ONGOING...

Nam says BUT THE COST IS ALWAYS
TRANSFERRED SOMEWHERE.

Yurek says WELL, YOU KNOW WHAT?
THE INDUSTRY IS PROBABLY GOING
TO CHANGE TO HOW THEIR PRODUCTS
ARE PACKAGED, WHAT PACKAGING
THEY DO USE, AND THAT WILL
REDUCE THE COST IN THAT SYSTEM
BECAUSE THEY'LL CHANGE TO MAKE
IT A RECYCLABLE PRODUCT OR
THEY'LL USE RECYCLABLE MATERIALS
IN THEIR PRODUCT AND AT THE END
OF THE DAY THEY'RE ALSO GOING TO
BE CONTINUING THAT RECYCLING
INDUSTRY WHICH WILL BE ANOTHER
OFFSHOOT POSSIBLY FOR INCOME.
I DON'T SEE MUCH OF ANY CHANGE
AT ALL WITH THE COST BEING
DOWNLOADED TO INDIVIDUALS.
I HONESTLY SEE THE INDUSTRY
WORKING TO MAKE IT A BETTER,
MORE EFFICIENT SYSTEM, WHICH AT
THE END OF THE DAY SHOULD COST
LESS.

Nam says WHAT WOULD MOTIVATE
PRODUCERS, BECAUSE IT SOUNDS
LIKE THEY'RE GOING TO BE
SHOULDERING EVERYTHING ELSE.
WHAT'S GOING TO MOTIVATE THEM TO
CREATE PRODUCTS THAT ARE EASIER
TO RECYCLE AND ALSO TO MAKE SURE
THAT THE END PRODUCT IS ALSO
DISPOSED OF SAFELY?

Yurek says WELL, I MEAN, WE WILL BE
TRANSFERRING THAT RESPONSIBILITY
TO THEM TO FOLLOW THROUGH, BUT,
I MEAN, I THINK PRODUCERS... YOU
SPEAK TO A LOBLAWS AND WAL-MART
AND OTHER LARGE PRODUCERS.
THEY WANT TO DO BETTER FOR THE
ENVIRONMENT, AND I THINK THEY'LL
STEP FORWARD WITH ENSURING THAT...

Nam says SO WHY AREN'T THEY DOING IT NOW?

Yurek says WELL, I THINK THEY'RE DOING
WHAT THEY CAN WITHIN THE
MARKETPLACE, BUT THEY CAN'T DO
IT NOW BECAUSE THE MUNICIPALITY
IS SETTING WHAT'S IN THE BLUE
BOX.
THERE'S NO INCENTIVE AND THEY
DON'T KNOW HOW TO GET THE RIGHT
PACKAGING FOR TORONTO, BUT THEN
MISSISSAUGA RECYCLES SOMETHING
ELSE, SO THEY HAVE TO CHANGE THE
PACKAGING.
THERE'S NO STANDARDIZATION OF
WHAT GOES IN THE BLUE BOX.
THIS IS A STANDARD SO INDUSTRY
KNOWS HOW TO PACKAGE THE
MATERIAL, PRESENT THE MATERIAL,
MARKET THE MATERIAL SO IT IS
RECYCLABLE...

Nam says WHAT ABOUT FOREIGN
COMPANIES?
HOW WOULD THAT WORK?

Yurek says WELL, I MEAN, WE'LL HAVE TO
DEAL WITH THAT AS WE GO THROUGH
OUR CONSULTATION.
IT'S EARLY, AS I SAID...

Nam says WOULD YOU BE REGULATING?

Yurek says WE'RE GOING TO HAVE A
RECYCLING PROGRAM IN THIS
PROVINCE.
RIGHT NOW WE HAVE, AS I SAID,
WAL-MART AND LOBLAWS, WAL-MART
IS AN AMERICAN COMPANY AND
THEY'RE RIGHT ON BOARD TO DO
WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE IN THE
PROVINCE OF ONTARIO.
LOBLAWS IS NATIONAL...

Nam says DO YOU WORRY THEY
MIGHT GO TO OTHER PROVINCES
WHERE THEY DON'T HAVE TO DEAL
WITH THIS?

Yurek says NOT AT ALL.
I THINK... WE HAVE 14 MILLION
PEOPLE IN THIS PROVINCE WHICH
ARE CONSUMERS WHICH THEY WANT TO
SELL THEIR GOODS TO.
WE ALSO, I BELIEVE, THEY ARE
MORE SOCIALLY, ENVIRONMENTALLY
CONSCIOUS AND WANT TO DO THE
RIGHT THING.
THIS IS REALLY A GREAT WIN FOR
THEM.
IT'S A WIN FOR US.
AND IT'S A WIN FOR
MUNICIPALITIES.

Nam says SO IF THE
MUNICIPALITIES ARE GOING TO BE
STEPPING AWAY FROM THE RECYCLING
SYSTEM, WILL THE PROVINCIAL
GOVERNMENT BE REGULATING THE NEW
SYSTEM, OR DO YOU SEE INDUSTRY
REGULATING ITSELF?

Yurek says WE WILL BE OVERSEEING TO MAKE
SURE THEY'RE REACHING THE
TARGETS... THE TARGETS THEY HAVE TO
REACH.

Nam says IF THEY DON'T, WILL
YOU TAX THEM?

Yurek says WE'LL HAVE TO SEE HOW THOSE
CONSULTATIONS GO AS WE DEVELOP
THIS PROCESS GOING FORWARD.
BUT THERE WILL BE SOME OVERSIGHT
ON THE PROVINCIAL SIDE OF THINGS
AND MUNICIPALITIES, WITH THE
MONEY THEY SAVE, HOPEFULLY THEY
CAN INVEST IN THEIR OWN
INFRASTRUCTURE.
I KNOW IN RURAL ONTARIO, IT'S
TOUGH TO GET A BRIDGE BUILT, AND
HOPEFULLY THEY'LL HAVE MORE
MONEY TO SPEND ON THAT TYPE OF
STUFF.

The caption changes to "Connect with us: Twitter: @theagenda; Facebook, agendaconnect@tvo.org, Instagram."

Nam says IS THERE ANY
POSSIBILITY THAT PART OF THAT
PLAN WILL INCLUDE INCINERATION,
IN PART TO RECYCLE PRODUCTS AND
CAPTURING THAT ENERGY FROM
INCINERATION FOR ELECTRICITY?

Yurek says I HAVEN'T REALLY GONE DOWN
THAT PATH YET.
I KNOW THERE'S MIXED MESSAGES ON
INCINERATION.
A LOT OF EUROPE STILL DOES
INCINERATION.
I KNOW THERE'S A BIG PUSH IN
NORTH AMERICA NOT TO DO
INCINERATION.
WE'RE FOCUSING RIGHT NOW ON
FIXING THE RECYCLING SIDE OF THE
PICKUP AND THE SORTING AND
CREATING A NEW ECONOMY, BUT
WE'RE DEFINITELY OPEN TO LOOKING
AT EVERYTHING, BUT AS I SAID,
THAT'S NOT COME ACROSS OUR TABLE
YET.

Nam says IS THERE ANYONE DOING
WHAT YOU WANT TO DO NOW, LIKE
BRITISH COLUMBIA OR...

Yurek says I WAS AT THE MINISTERS...
MINISTERS OF ENVIRONMENT MEETING
AT THE END OF JUNE WITH MINISTER
MCKENNA, AND WE'RE ALL TRYING
TO GO TO THE SAME ROUTE.
WE HAVE ZERO PLASTIC WASTE
AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE PROVINCES.
ONTARIO IS PROBABLY THE LEADING
WAY... LEADING THE WAY WITH
PUTTING THE FULL COST ONTO THE
PRODUCER.
THE OTHER PROVINCES ARE HEADING
DOWN THAT PATH.
MAYBE NOT FOR THE ENTIRETY THAT
WE'RE PUSHING FOR.
SASKATCHEWAN HAS ITS OWN
BOTTLING RECYCLING INDUSTRY
ITSELF.
IT DOESN'T REALLY WANT TO TOUCH
THAT.
BUT BASICALLY ALL THE PROVINCES
AND TERRITORIES SEEM TO BE ON
THE SAME PATH.
BUT WE'RE LEADING THE WAY.

The caption changes to "Producer: Meredith Martin, @MeredithMartin."

Nam says MINISTER, THANK YOU SO
MUCH FOR MAKING TIME FOR US.

Yurek says THANK YOU.

Nam says TO CLARIFY WHAT'S BEEN
HAPPENING WITH THE LINDSAY REPORT.

Yurek says APPRECIATE IT.

Nam says WE APPRECIATE YOUR TIME.

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