Proposed Regulation to exempt containers under the Deposit Return Program from Waste Diversion Ontario’s Blue Box Program Plan

ERO number
Notice type
Posted by
Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks
Notice stage
Proposal Updated
Proposal posted
Comment period
July 19, 2007 - August 18, 2007 (30 days) Closed
Last updated

Update Announcement

This proposal notice has been updated on 03/31/2021 to advise the public that this file is still under active review. The ministry is reviewing the comments it has received to date. The original proposal date and comment period have not been altered.

March 31, 2021

This consultation was open from:

July 19, 2007
to August 18, 2007

Proposal details

Description of regulation

The Minister’s regulation is intended to exempt specified stewards of containers that are under the Ontario Deposit Return Program from their obligations, as set out in the rules in the Blue Box Program Plan, for only those containers that are placed under deposit return starting February 5, 2007. These specified stewards include the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) and any manufacturer that sells spirits, beer or wine.

This alternative collection method for beverage alcohol containers will free up space in Blue Boxes, giving municipal governments the opportunity to expand recycling programs. Consequently, Waste Diversion Ontario has deducted the tonnage and costs associated with managing LCBO’s containers through the Blue Box system from the 2007 steward fees.

The government anticipates that there will be a period of transition as consumers become accustomed to the deposit return program, and therefore costs to municipalities who continue to manage the Blue Box. To address these costs LCBO will continue to contribute $5 million for each of the next two years to help offset the costs of recycling beverage alcohol containers that continue to end up in the Blue Box.

In the remaining years residual beverage alcohol containers that make their way into the blue box system will be identified through Waste Diversion Ontario audits and further action will be considered if required.

This proposed regulation is to be made under the Waste Diversion Act, 2002, amending O. Reg. 273/02 (Blue Box Waste).


On February 5, 2007, Ontario consumers began paying a refundable deposit on all wine and spirit containers purchased in Ontario at the LCBO, agency stores and retail distillery stores, with the deposit refunded when consumers returned the empty containers to Brewers Retail Inc. for a full refund.

A deposit applies to all wine and spirit containers above 100 ml, including glass and plastic bottles, tetra paks, bag-in-a-box, and aluminum cans.

The Deposit Return Program will reduce waste going to landfills, increase recycling of wine and spirit containers, and lower municipal recycling costs.

The Deposit Return Program complements the Blue Box program by increasing the number of containers that are recycled.

Purpose of regulation

The Ministry of the Environment is proposing an amendment to an existing Minister’s Regulation that will exempt containers under the Deposit Return Program from Waste Diversion Ontario’s Blue Box Program Plan. Affected stewards would no longer be obligated as stewards for those containers.

Other information:

Section 42 of the Waste Diversion Act, 2002, sets out the power of the Minister to make regulations and provides the Minister with the appropriate authority to make this amendment.

Ontario Regulation 273/02 (Blue Box Waste), under the Waste Diversion Act, 2002, prescribes specific waste as blue box waste and designates Stewardship Ontario as the industry funding organization for a waste diversion program for this waste under the Waste Diversion Act, 2002.

Section 30 of the Waste Diversion Act, 2002, authorizes an industry funding organization, designated by the regulations as the industry funding organization for a waste diversion program, to make rules, including rules designating stewards in respect of the designated waste, and rules setting fees to be paid by stewards.

Supporting materials

View materials in person

Important notice: Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, viewing supporting materials in person is not available at this time.

Please reach out to the Contact listed in this notice to see if alternate arrangements can be made.

Waste Management Policy Branch

135 St. Clair Avenue West
Toronto, ON
M4V 1P5

Office phone number


Commenting is now closed.

The comment period was from July 19, 2007
to August 18, 2007

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John Fox

Phone number
Resource Recovery Policy Branch

40 St. Clair Avenue West
8th floor
Toronto, ON
M4V 1M2

Office phone number

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