Canada and Clothesline: A ban that Indians in British Columbia are challenging

The main reason why this rule of not using a clothesline is getting a push at this point in time is the fact that it can significantly reduce the energy load

Livemint
Updated25 Sep 2022
Clothes dryers typically use more energy than any other major appliance
Clothes dryers typically use more energy than any other major appliance(AP)

Drying clothes under the sun and putting out a drying rack were banned by law in Canada's British Columbia a long time back, yet not many knew about this. But recently, according to local media reports, the Union of B.C. Municipalities have called for a new resolution - the clothesline act - noting that nothing prohibits residents from using clotheslines outdoors at a single-family dwelling or on the ground floor of a multi-unit residential building. 

However, this habit of hanging clothes on one's balcony was often frowned upon. 

CBC News shared the story of Tanushree Pillai who had never thought twice about hanging her children's clothes up to dry on her New Westminster balcony. However, a few months later, she received a letter from her strata council, warning her and seeking an apology for disobeying the orders. Failure to do so, it warned, would result in a fine.

Why UBCM is batting for clothesline act?

Now the residents are up in arms against the ‘hypocritical’ order which they feel has no value in today's world that's fighting against climate change and working towards saving carbon footprints by reducing energy load. 

CBC News suggests, the idea was reportedly first brought to Powell River city council through its Climate Change Committee. Admitting with the idea, Counsellor Carole Ann Leishman told the news entity , “It just makes complete sense, it reduces our energy load … it just saves people costs, not having to run their dryer,” 

Endorsing the same, now UBCM members will ask the provincial government to take it up. 

However, British Columbia is not the first region to endorse the clothesline act. In 2010, Nova Scotia introduced a clothesline act to reduce energy consumption, as well as greenhouse gases and other emissions. "There is a movement all across North America," said Rob Baxter with the Society Promoting Environmental Conservation. Similarly, several other US cities have also introduced the system.  

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