Municipal Affairs and Environment
March 5, 2019

Provincial Government Launches Consultations on Banning Single Use Plastic Bags

Today, the Provincial Government is launching public consultations related to a provincial ban on single use retail plastic bags. Information gathered will assist in determining what implications a ban might have on businesses and the public, as well as what approach might reduce impacts on those who use, distribute, and make single use plastic bags.

The public, businesses, and environmental, community, and industry organizations are encouraged to be a part of the consultations process. They can visit external link icon to fill out the online questionnaire or read the discussion document and provide a written submission on the impacts of a potential ban of these bags. Written submissions can be emailed to or sent by regular mail to:

Plastic Bag Consultations
Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment
P.O. Box 8700
St. John's, NL
A1B 4J6

The deadline to participate is March 27.

The Honourable Graham Letto, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Environment, will be available to media today (Tuesday, March 5) in front of the House of Assembly, East Block, Confederation Building, at 11:00 a.m. to discuss the consultation process.

In September 2018, the Provincial Government and the Multi-Materials Stewardship Board met with Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador, regional service boards, landfill representatives, the Retail Council of Canada, the Canadian Plastics Industry Association, and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. Discussions centred on the potential repercussions of a ban on plastic bags, and it was determined that dedicated public opinion research should be undertaken to inform a potential approach. A summary document of what we heard from the meeting can be found online at PDF icon.

To address the broader category of packaging, the Provincial Government is working with the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment toward establishing an Extended Producer Responsibility program for the management of packaging and printed paper as a long-term strategy. This builds on the province’s ongoing work with the Council on the Zero Plastic Waste Strategy as part of the Ocean Plastics Charter.

“This government is committed to protecting the environment and to improving the waste management system, which includes handling of plastic bags. We have heard the calls for a ban, and we are continuing to work with the Multi-Materials Stewardship Board and stakeholder groups on the potential implications of a ban. I encourage anyone who uses, makes, or distributes these bags to participate in the consultations process.”
Honourable Graham Letto
Minister of Municipal Affairs and Environment

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Learn more
Consultations on Ban of Single Use Plastic Bag external link icon

Stakeholder Meeting What We Heard document PDF icon

2018 Interdepartmental Report on Plastic Shopping Bag Management in Newfoundland and Labrador PDF icon

Media contact
Lynn Robinson
Municipal Affairs and Environment
709-729-5449, 691-9466

2019 03 05                              9:10 a.m.