Toronto bans plastic bags

New York -- Toronto has become the first major city in Canada to ban the use of plastic shopping bags.

The ban was passed by the city council in a surprise move that Toronto Mayor Rob Ford denounced as “ludicrous,” The Globe and Mail reported.

The vote bans plastic bags, including biodegradable ones, from Toronto vendors starting in 2013. But the mayor predicted the ban will face a legal challenge.

The ban calls for the city “to prohibit all City of Toronto retail stores from providing customers with single-use plastic carryout (shopping) bags, including those advertised as compostable, biodegradable, photodegradable or similar.”

In May, Los Angeles became the largest city in the United States to pass a ban on plastic bags.

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