Newspapers submit plan to comply with British Columbia EPR law

British Columbia enacted extended producer responsibility (EPR) for packaging and printed paper (PPP) in 2011. Producers were required to be operating with an approved stewardship plan and to pay for collection of their products within three years of the regulation taking effect, according to a July 18 article in Resource Recycling, but the newspaper industry has not been paying. Multi-Material BC (recently renamed Recycle BC) began collecting PPP and receiving payments from most producers in 2014. Newspaper is included as a covered product, alongside any other materials that use text and graphics to communicate information, with the exception of most books.

British Columbia members of the newspaper industry association News Media Canada submitted their plan, which would have "newspaper publishers offer free ad space to government agencies in lieu of payment. Public agencies would then pay the newspapers' stewardship payments to Recycle BC, the producer-funded stewardship organization for packaging and printed paper (PPP), using the money saved by not paying for ads... Each newspaper will be assigned a cost responsibility based on the amount of newsprint it consumes and they would provide government agencies with an equivalent amount of advertising. According to the plan, neither the government nor other producers will be subsidizing the newspapers under this arrangement." The plan must be reviewed and approved by the province.