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Will demerged cities follow Montreal in banning plastic bags?

Beaconsfield undecided on plastic bag ban
Thu, Jan 11: Montreal banned plastic bags in 2018, but the ban does not apply to demerged cities. As Global's Dan Spector reports one municipality is still undecided about what it will do.

Montreal’s ban on thin, plastic grocery bags came into effect on January 1st, but the ban doesn’t apply to demerged cities on the island.

Beaconsfield mayor Georges Bourelle has not yet decided whether or not his city will implement a plastic bag ban.

“We’re not saying plastic bags should not be banned, what we’re saying is before we make an impulsive decision, which seems it was the case in Montreal, we should do our homework,” Bourelle told Global News. 

READ MORE: No more plastic bags in Montreal; first major Canadian city to implement ban

He says he’s awaiting the results of a study from Recyc-Quebec, a Quebec government organization that advocates for recycling.

The study was supposed to be released before the Montreal ban arrived, but was delayed.

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Recyc-Quebec told Global News the study will be released on Friday.

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Plastic bags thinner than 0.05 mm are no longer allowed in the city of Montreal. Though the ban came into effect in January, it will only be enforced in June.

Bourelle sees problems with a city-by-city ban, for example if bags were to be banned in Beaconsfield, but not in neighbouring Kirkland.

“Either it doesn’t make sense to ban plastic bags because the alternatives are no good, or if it makes sense, let’s do it province-wide,” Bourelle said.

READ MORE: Should Edmonton ban plastic bags? Grocery store reignites debate

“A lot of people come in and don’t want bags anyway,” said Laima Rutkauskas of Hub Hardware, while holding up a thin plastic bag. “This, I’m going to get rid of.”