Table of contents

Status: Bill 83 came into force on December 2, 2021
Ministry responsible: Environment and Parks

Overview

Bill 83: the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Amendment Act enables the creation of an Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) framework that shifts the physical and financial responsibility of recycling waste to industry product and packaging producers and away from local governments and taxpayers.

Bill 83 supports innovation and create jobs through new provincial systems for managing single-use plastics, packaging and paper products, and hazardous and special products like household pesticides and solvents. Bill 83 also supports Alberta’s transition to a plastics circular economy that ensures plastics are kept out of landfills for longer, not just by reuse and recycling but also by remanufacturing into new products.

Current legislation and regulations for waste management and recycling in Alberta have not kept pace with other Canadian jurisdictions, such as British Columbia. Alberta is currently the only province without EPR systems, even though Alberta sends about 1,034 kg per person of waste annually to landfills - more than any other Canadian jurisdiction. The national average is 710 kg.

Changes were informed by public and stakeholder feedback received during the EPR engagement earlier in 2021. Developing a plastics circular economy is a key part of Alberta’s Natural Gas Vision and Strategy and will contribute positively to Alberta’s recovery.

Key changes

The Environmental Protection and Enhancement Amendment Act:

  • enables the creation of effective and efficient producer-run provincial recycling systems for single-use plastics, packaging and paper products, and hazardous and special products
  • maximizes government’s flexibility by setting collection and recovery requirements in regulation, rather than in statute, ensuring that producer-run material collection and recovery programs can be customized to best suit their needs while still meeting performance targets and expectations
  • ensures that regulatory requirements are reasonable and enforceable by allowing exemptions for various elements of EPR systems, such as the designated materials, types of activities, or classification of industry
  • ensures that the necessary information can be collected to determine eligibility for these exemptions

Next steps

Bill 83, the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Amendment Act came into force on December 2, 2021. A regulatory framework would be targeted for spring 2022.

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