Fewer Canadians support a ban on single-use plastics since the COVID-19 outbreak began, a new survey by Dalhousie University suggests.
Between 2019 and 2020, the proportion of Canadians who support plastic bans and regulation dropped from 70 per cent to 58 per cent, according to a poll conducted by the university’s Agri-Food Analytics Lab (AFAL).
“While more strict regulation, and even bans, seemed before to be consensual measures, that support has eroded,” said Robert Kitz, principal author of the study.
Even if, according to the report, Canadians remain conscious of the environmental impact of plastics, 29 per cent of respondents felt they had consumed more plastic-wrapped products during the pandemic, and more than half of those polled felt it would be better to wait until the crisis is over before imposing new restrictions on plastics use.
“Perhaps COVID-19 has caused some to forget about our dependence on plastic,” said study co-author Tony Walker. “But the problem is still with us.”
In partnership with the Angus Reid polling firm, the AFAL compared about 1,014 responses on the issue of plastics provided in May 2019 with 977 responses provided in July.
Each sampling has a margin of error of about 3.2 percentage points 19 times out of 20.