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New program to help reduce waste and use resources

By Caitlin Snow Aug 2, 2023 | 12:21 PM

Nicolas Raymond / CC

The province is taking another step toward a greener economy.

The extended producer responsibility programs (EPR) will make producers of goods accountable for what happens to their products when users are done with them, by improving recycling and reducing waste. The programs are a key part of the circular economy, which refers to retaining and recovering as much value as possible from resources by reusing, repairing, refurbishing, remanufacturing, repurposing or recycling products and materials.

This includes batteries, lamps, small household appliance, as well as packaging and other blue bag materials.

“Nova Scotia has long been a leader in recycling and composting. Nova Scotians are proud of their efforts and they want us to do more to show that leadership,” said Environment and Climate Change Minister Timothy Halman. “Growing the circular economy is a key action for fighting climate change, and extended producer responsibility programs are one of the best ways we can grow our circular economy. By adding four new extended producer responsibility programs, we are reaffirming Nova Scotia’s position as a leader in sustainable waste resource management and building a cleaner, greener and more sustainable future for generations to come.”

The new EPR programs fall under two sets of regulations:
— the Solid Waste-Resource Management Regulations now include programs for batteries, lamps and small, household electric appliances, such as irons, can openers and hair dryers
— a new set of EPR regulations covers packaging, paper products and materials in the residential blue bag recycling program, making producers responsible to pay for, collect, and recycle the materials. Producers will have to meet recycling targets that will encourage more eco-friendly packaging and reduce single-use plastics. Having producers cover the cost of recycling will save Nova Scotia municipalities around $25 million annually.

The province already has similar programs for electronics, paint, used oil and glycol.

The program is set to take place over the next 28 months.


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