In his quest for further support in the important swing state of Michigan, US presidential candidate John Kerry has called for a ban on exports of Canadian waste to Michigan landfills. Kerry and President George Bush are locked in a battle to win crucial electoral-college votes, which are decided purely on a state-by-state basis.
Candidates will go to great lengths to garner local support, particularly in the 17 swing states where the results are still considered too close to call. In Nevada, Mr. Kerry has promised to stop a project that would see the state’s Yucca Mountain become the permanent repository for nuclear waste.
Critics point out that if Mr. Kerry is elected there is little he will unlikely be able to do about actually banning the imports. Under the NAFTA waste moves back and forth across the border, with Michigan taking Ontario solid waste and sending its hazardous waste back across the border to Ontario. Ironically, Michigan recently decided Toronto garbage meets new local requirements.