We have retailers collecting a fee for a service they don’t offer and an organization that sets fees for a service that is largely invisible to most consumers. How the government will propose to fix this is anybody’s guess but I will probably be blogging about it come October 18.
My wife decided to buy a new clock radio. It was a mini design, less than 15 cm square and probably weighs a few ounces. It’s mostly plastic. It was manufactured in China and was imported from Miami, FL by a big box retailer (not Canadian Tire). The retail price was $10.00. The eco fee? $2.75 plus HST. I was under the impression that major retailers had (at least temporarily) suspended charging these fees while the government considered how to ‘fix’ the program. But apparently not. There’s no indication what this 25%+ surcharge is paying for (return shipping to China for recycling?), why the fee is so high on this item or how this helps to keep the item out of landfill. The retailer doesn’t accept electronics for recycling. So this particular item is being returned for refund. Maybe that’s the point – don’t buy it in the first place.