The B.C. Supreme Court ruled in favour of the City of Victoria by dismissing a legal challenge launched earlier this year by the Canadian Plastic Bag Association against the City’s ban on merchants distributing single-use plastic bags. (Victoria News file photo)

BC Supreme Court rules in favour of Victoria’s plastic bag ban

Court dismisses a challenge by the Canadian Plastic Bag Association

The B.C. Supreme Court has ruled in favour of the City of Victoria and dismissed a legal challenge to the City’s Checkout Bag Regulation Bylaw brought by the Canadian Plastic Bag Association.

The bylaw will ban all businesses from giving out or selling plastic bags, and impose a minimum charge of 15 cents for paper bags, and $1 for reusable bags as alternative choices.

RELATED: Group lobbies Supreme Court over Victoria’s plastic bag ban

The association had claimed the ban would “significantly impact” its members who manufacture and supply bags for the Victoria market, and lobbied against the move in January.

The B.C. Supreme Court decision was released Tuesday.

“I find no evidence of bad faith in this case,” ruled Justice Nathan Smith in a statement. “Although some members of council may have been motivated by broad environmental concerns, council’s attention was properly drawn to ways in which discarded plastic bags impact municipal facilities and services. Council decided that those issues could be addressed by prohibiting a specific form of consumer transaction.”

RELATED: Plastic bag ban guidelines unclear, local businesses say

The City was happy with the decision and is keeping July 1 as the effective date for the bylaw.

“The City is very pleased that the Court has confirmed our ability to regulate checkout bags,” said Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps. “This decision represents an important step in moving away from unsustainable business practices that create high volumes of waste and litter in our community.”

For more information on the bylaw you can visit victoria.ca/reusablebags.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com

City of VictoriaPlastic Bag Ban

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