Surrey, B.C., single-use bylaw in effect as of October 18, 2021 - Retail Council of Canada
British Columbia | Plastics and Alternatives | Sustainability

Surrey, B.C., single-use bylaw in effect as of October 18, 2021

October 26, 2021

The City of Surrey passed their single-use bylaw without warning on October 18, 2021. They did this in an effort to have the first single-use checkout bag bylaw in Metro Vancouver. While Surrey could have chosen to make their bylaw effective at a future date, they did not do so and it became effective October 18, 2021.

RCC has spoken with Surrey City staff and confirmed that the enforcement and reporting requirement, which requires businesses to report the number of paper and reusable bags distributed during the year, will not begin until January 1, 2022. RCC is continuing to engage with the City of Surrey on (a) how reporting will work, (b) when fees need to begin, and (c) how to manage existing plastic bag inventories without sending those to landfill.

As previously noted, the bylaw will ban single-use plastic bags, as well as polystyrene foam containers and cups. City of Surrey staff have informed RCC that all small paper bags 15cm by 20cm and smaller can be distributed free of charge no matter their use. 

For questions or more information contact

Avery Bruenjes
Senior Manager, Government Relations and Regulatory Affairs