The Quebec government is planning to introduce legislation to abolish Recyc-Québec, a non-crown multi-stakeholder organization that is responsible for coordinating waste diversion in the province.
This decision is part of the government’s 2010-2014 Action Plan for expense reduction and control, which sets out plans to abolish or restructure about 20 public funds and organizations.
In response to this announcement, Usman Valiante, a senior policy analyst with Corporate Policy Group, made the following comments:
“The repatriation of the environmental oversight and environmental standard setting functions of Recyc-Québec into Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des Parcs represents the next evolutionary step in EPR in Quebec.
Between the Government’s role of setting and overseeing clear environmental standards and diversion targets for the recovery, reuse and recycling of product and packaging wastes and producers discharging their end-of-life responsibilities against those standards and targets through market-based programs, the purpose and role of intermediary “stewardship” organizations such as Recyc-Québec and Waste Diversion Ontario (perhaps much more so) is becoming more unclear.
What is clear is that for market-based solutions like EPR to work, the roles between regulator and regulated need to be sharply defined and the oversight of producer driven programs has to be governed through simple and clear rules that are fair and easy to navigate.
Quebec’s move must be providing Ontario policy makers with some food for thought.”