The City of Edmonton: Anticipating Extended Producer Responsibility
(5 pages of text)
Case (Pub Mat)
The City of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada (COE), recognizing that its once world-class waste management system needed major transformation, published an ambitious and progressive waste management strategic plan (“The Future of Waste”) on October 4, 2019. Among numerous initiatives, policies, and frameworks, the plan made reference to the concept of extended producer responsibility (EPR), a public policy mechanism for increasing the responsibility of producers for post-consumer (i.e., end-of-life) product and packaging waste. Although such policies were typically enacted at a provincial level, it seemed inevitable that, if EPR came into reality in Alberta, the COE would have some involvement in promotion and/or physical post-consumer collection logistics (a critical enabler of any successful EPR system). There was, thus, an opportunity for the COE to consider how its new direction for waste management should incorporate logistical support for EPR, from a coordination/leadership and/or a physical perspective.
The issue at hand was whether and how the COE should be involved (logistically) in any potential EPR manifestation, which would include an analysis of what made a good post-consumer collection system; what existed in the COE at the time from current industry players, such as retailers, third-party logistics (3PL) providers, and providers of last-mile delivery services; and what specific role the COE could play (e.g., through waste and recycling collection).
This published-sources case is appropriate for logistics or supply chain courses or modules at an undergraduate or graduate level. It provides a description of a modern context that has some degree of urgency, along with a streamlined theoretical discussion about EPR and post-consumer collection logistics, including multiple examples from other jurisdictions that have implemented EPR.
After working through the case and assignment questions, students should be able to
- explain the concept of EPR and the important role that post-consumer collection logistics plays;
- identify the various stakeholders and their potential roles in a post-consumer collection system; and
- understand the logistics of an effective collection system (which requires understanding and applying knowledge of the components of an effective distribution system, such as consolidation).
Administrative, Support, Waste Management and Remediation Services
Canada, Large, 2019
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