Toronto is First Large Canadian City To Ban The Plastic Bag, And Rob Ford Is The Greenest Toronto Mayor Ever

West Annex News/CC BY 2.0

A few years back, the City of Toronto introduced a 5 cent tax on disposable plastic bags. They didn't collect the money, but store keepers had to charge it. It was a huge success, reducing plastic bag use by half, but Mayor Ford didn't like it, saying people were irritated by it. So without study, public consultation or a report from City staff, he went to City Council to remove the tax, just because he didn't like it.

He got his way; there is no longer a 5 cent tax on bags. But then a conservative supporter of Mayor Ford made a modest proposal: Why not ban the bags altogether? Seattle did it. Italy did it. Why not Toronto? “Just get rid of the damn bags!” said Councillor David Shiner. And that is exactly what they did, as of January 1, 2013. The mayor is outraged. He is quoted in the Star:

I think we’re gonna get sued. I don’t see how we’re gonna win that. It’s gonna be very difficult. It’s not a smart move by council to ban plastic bags. I don’t think it’s gonna hold up.

Adam Vaughan, usually one of the most articulate opponents of Mayor Ford, gave him a rare tribute. "Ford's the greenest Mayor we've ever had!"

Tags: Plastic Bags | Toronto