Lise Vaugeois MPP, Thunder Bay–Superior North

Government of Ontario

Ahead of World Water Day, NDP re-introduces solution to reduce microfibres in Ontario’s water

Published on March 21, 2023

QUEEN'S PARK — MPP Jessica Bell (University-Rosedale) has reintroduced her bill to ensure all washing machines sold in Ontario are equipped with a filter that reduces the shed of microfibres into water and soil systems.

"Microfibres are a common type of microplastic that shed from our clothes into washing machines,” said Bell. “With every load of laundry we do, thousands of microfibres are released into our waterways and the Great Lakes. This plastic pollution degrades our drinking water and harms wildlife. It’s hurting the environment with every passing day."

The bill is informed by research conducted by the University of Toronto Rochman Lab that studies the effects of microfibres on the environment and is supported by Georgian Bay Forever, a charity working to protect the aquatic ecosystem.

"Ontario families want to protect our beautiful lakes and rivers from harmful textile pollution," said Bell. “This bill would update standards so that families can be confident they aren’t unintentionally hurting Ontario water with each load of laundry.”

The Environmental Protection Amendment Act (Microplastics Filters for Washing Machines) bill was first introduced by Bell in 2021, when it was stalled by the Ford government.

World Water Day is Wednesday, March 22.


David Sweetnam, Executive Director of Georgian Bay Forever:

“Microfibres are the most dominant form of microplastics and are ubiquitous in our environment, impacting every species that eats and drinks - including humans. Microfibres are showing up in human organs and bloodstreams with unknown long-term consequences. Microfibre filters have been proven, both in lab and in communities, to effectively divert plastic pollution away from the waterways. This bill would take precautionary steps to safeguard Ontario's drinking water and all watersheds.”