March 25, 2022DISTRICT OF UCLUELET BANS PLASTIC AND BIO-PLASTIC UTENSILS Taking the next step towards the responsible stewardship of the lands we are grateful to operate within, the District of Ucluelet bans single-use plastic utensils. _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ UCLUELET, B.C. - On March 15, 2022 District of Ucluelet Council adopted Single-Use Item Regulation Amendment Bylaw No. 1298, 2022 which adds Plastic and Bio-Plastic Utensils to the list of items being regulated within the municipality.
On July 26, 2021 Ministerial Order M309, provided municipalities the authority to make a bylaw to regulate, prohibit and impose requirements in relation to the protection of the natural environment.
The District of Ucluelet, situated in the traditional territory of the Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ acknowledges that the relationship the Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ have to the land and surrounding sea, goes deeper than the typical land use issues encountered by a municipality. With this in mind, we are committed to the respectful and responsible stewardship of its natural resources and to the preservation of the local environment for future generations to come. As such, it is with pride that we bring into effect a ban on plastic utensils.
As defined in Ministerial Order M309, the word utensil “includes a spoon, fork, knife, chopstick or stir stick”. Enforcement of the ban on plastic utensils will come into effect on September 15, 2022, allowing a six-month transitional time-period for the business community to adjust their current practices, educate staff, use up any existing stocks of plastic utensils they may have on hand, and source out appropriate and available product alternatives. During this six-month transitional time-period, staff will continue to work with Surfrider Pacific Rim to ensure their “Cut the Cutlery” campaign becomes a familiar and welcome addition to our business and residential community.
“With the recent ban of plastic utensils in our neighbouring municipality, we are proud to take this next step in empowering our West Coast communities to transition to a culture of environmental protection and stewardship. We are extremely grateful for the support of Surfrider Pacific Rim, as we roll-out an awareness campaign that will encourage behavioural change and help businesses prepare for, comply with, and communicate the upcoming requirements to their staff, customers, and visitors to the area.” said Paula Mason, District of Ucluelet’s Manager of Corporate Services.
"Collaboration is the key to creating a culture shift with single-use plastic items. The local businesses, the District of Ucluelet, and the residents have all been so supportive of this initiative. We are very grateful for all the work everyone has done to create this positive change in behavior. The tides are turning on eliminating single-use items so let's keep the momentum going for the sake of the health of our bodies and the ocean!" Laurie Hannah, Chapter Coordinator, Surfrider Pacific Rim.
As shown on the Government of BC’s Environmental Protection and Sustainability website page, the District of Ucluelet will be one of the first municipalities in British Columbia to regulate all single-use items suggested in the July 2021 Ministerial Order. The continued regulation of these items (and future items) by our Council, supports the ongoing efforts of CleanBC’s Plastics Action Plan as well as initiatives brought forth in the District of Ucluelet’s recently adopted Climate Change Adaptation Plan and Official Community Plan. Visit our Ucluelet.ca to read the background on the development of the Single-Use Item Regulation Bylaw.
“The lands of the Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ and the District of Ucluelet are very closely linked, in that we all share close ties to the area’s forests, waters and natural resources. Placing a ban on plastic utensils and other single-use items, is a huge step towards doing everything in our power to protect and preserve these lands. In doing so, we aim to create the type of sustainable community our citizens can enjoy for future generations to come. We truly appreciate all the support we’ve already seen from our business and residential community and look forward to sharing this common goal with all who visit our region.” said Mayco Noel, Mayor, District of Ucluelet.
A true West Coast working harbour, home to approximately 2,000 residents, Ucluelet is a place rich in tradition and natural beauty. Located at the entrance to Barkley Sound on the West Coast of Vancouver Island, just south of the Long Beach unit of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, Ucluelet is on the edge of the Wild Pacific Ocean. It offers visitors and residents the opportunity to live in and explore one of the world's most pristine coastlines.
About Surfrider Pacific Rim
Surfrider Pacific Rim is dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves, and beaches, for all people, through a powerful activist network. Living seaside or landlocked, regenerating this blue planet is essential for all of humanity to thrive. Surfrider’s focus is divided into 3 pillars: eliminating single-use plastics, finding the end-of-life solutions for hard to recycle petroleum products, as well as engaging youth, individuals, businesses, local First Nations, and government in their Ocean Friendly initiatives. Through their “beach to boardroom” systems approach, they address the root of the plastics pollution crisis with the vision of achieving clean water and healthy beaches. Through this approach, Surfrider has removed over 50 metric tonnes of marine debris from the West Coast, supported the implementation of plastic bans, and achieved numerous coastal victories.
Click here for the UNOFFICIAL CONSOLIDATION of Single-Use Item Regulation No. 1266, 2020 & No. 1298, 2022.