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Toronto joins growing list of municipalities to ban plastic bags

June 07, 2012
"What was brought up during the debate is the fact that many cities in North America — cities in Canada, in the United States — have said, no more [plastic] bags. And it works."
- Coun. David Shiner

What started off as a debate to get rid of an unpopular five-cent fee for a plastic bag has ended up with the largest outright ban on plastic bags in North America.

On Wednesday, some members of Toronto city council — urged on by Mayor Rob Ford — set out to get rid of the nickel fee charged by retailers for every plastic bag.

Ford succeeded in getting that fee scrapped. But by the end of the day, council also approved a motion to prohibit retailers from giving out, or even selling, any plastic shopping bags.

The ban, which takes effect on Jan. 1, includes "those advertised as compostable, biodegradable, photodegradable or similar."

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