Technically, it's called "extended producer responsibility"—and in practice it means governments handing over the task of recycling packaging to the companies that produce the waste. It happens in some capacity in most of Canada, and now Ontario is turning all of its recycling over to this model.
But can we really trust for-profit companies to take recycling seriously? Are we seeing the lower costs and packaging innovations that are supposed to be the upsides of using this strategy? When we say, "It's your mess, you clean it up!"—what happens if they don't?
GUEST: Calvin Lakhan, co-investigator of the “Waste Wiki” project at York University's Faculty of Environment and Urban Change, a research project devoted to advancing understanding of waste management research and policy in Canada.