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Quebec environment minister stands up to Coca Cola (February 03, 2006)

According to a report from CBC News, Quebec's Sustainable Development Minister Thomas Mulcair says he will force Co...


According to a report from CBC News, Quebec’s Sustainable Development Minister Thomas Mulcair says he will force Coca Cola to reinstate a five-cent deposit on the company’s non-carbonated soft drinks. Quebec law currently forces companies to pay a return fee on their beer and carbonated drink cans. Companies that produce non-carbonated drinks such as iced tea were part of the recycling consignment system voluntarily. But the Coca Cola corporation has decided to pull out of the system.

Coke says it wants to “make life easier” for customers and stores, and expects people will put their cans in domestic recycling boxes for regular pick up.

Sustainable Development Minister Thomas Mulcair says that’s not good enough and calls the decision to remove the five cent consignment fee unacceptable.

“It’s extremely difficult to understand how a serious company like Coca Cola can do something like this in 2006,” Mulcair says, adding that he believes Coke is trying to present the province with a done deal. But he says he will take action if necessary.

“We’re going to legislate if we have to. But the first thing were going to do is meet with Coca Cola to try to understand this gesture, which is completely against the environment.”

Mulcair says Ontario, which does not have the return fee policy, has a much lower rate of recycling for cans than Quebec.

For detailed analysis of this unfolding issue, please click on “Contributor’s Blog” on the left side of our homepage (in red) and read Usman Valiante’s blog entry entitled “What if?”


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