Ontario revises steward fees
Ontario’s environment ministry has amended the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Program Plan to revise the process for establishing steward fees to recover costs for operation of the program. The amendments took effect on February 19, 2013 and are intended to ensure financial sustainability for the program.
Under the Waste Diversion Act, 2002 (WDA), stewards are required to pay fees to not-for-profit industry funding organizations, such as Ontario Electronic Stewardship, who develop, implement and operate waste diversion programs. The waste electrical program has managed electronic waste since 2009.
The amendment involves Section 8 of the program plan, which contains the fee-setting methodology. A new subsection is being added that provides updated principles for setting fees that would apply from May 1, 2013 onwards. The principles are intended to facilitate the development of revised rules.
Newfoundland and Labrador target dumping
The Ministry of Environment and Conservation and the ministry responsible for the Multi-Material Stewardship Board in Newfoundland and Labrador have launched a new surveillance program to help municipalities deal with the issue of illegal dumping. The program is entitled the “Illegal Dumping Surveillance Program” and is based on the town of Conception Bay South’s successful enforcement and surveillance program.
The program is intended to provide up to seven communities with enforcement training and support, and is part of the overall provincial waste management strategy. All municipalities have been encouraged to take part in the training program. The Multi-Material Stewardship Board is investing $65,000 from the Waste Management Trust Fund for the program. The board is a crown agency that reports to the environment ministry.
Saskatchewan sets up multi-material program
Multi-Material Stewardship Western Inc., a non-profit organization that was established in March of 2010 to represent industry stewards, has been tasked to work with municipalities and other stakeholders to develop a multi-material recycling program under the Saskatchewan Household Packaging and Paper Stewardship Program Regulations pursuant to the Environmental Management and Protection Act, 2002.
The program is intended to provide a framework for funding the collection and recycling of materials such as printed paper, newsprint, cardboard, plastic, metal and glass packaging. Responsibility for managing and financing recycling programs will be transferred from the taxpayer to industry and consumers.
The plan is to be presented to the environment ministry for approval by August 6, 2013. The plan will outline how the recycling program will be structured, funded and managed. Municipalities that currently collect recycling are covering 100 per cent of the costs but, once the plan is established, industry will contribute up to 75 per cent of the costs to deliver the program. Those municipalities that choose to participate will be responsible for the remainder of the costs, and municipalities will be able to decide on the type of collection system for their community, whether curb-side pick-up or central depot, depending on the size of the community and the associated costs.
Quebec amends residuals compensation
The Government of Quebec has proposed a regulation to amend the regulation that governs compensation for municipal services provided to recover and reclaim residual materials under Quebec’s Environment Quality Act.
The proposed regulation will clarify the definition of “containers and packaging” to ensure that the compensation regime clearly includes containers and packaging designed and sold as single-use and short-term products. In addition, the draft regulation proposes that, as of 2013, the compensation paid to municipalities be divided amongst the various classes of materials that are covered by the program as follows: 69.1 per cent for containers and packaging; 20.5 per cent for printed matter; and 10.4 per cent for newspapers.
The proposed regulation will provide that, in addition to the owner of a trademark, the user of such a trademark may be required to pay a contribution. It also proposes to share equally among businesses and municipalities the various expenses associated with recovery of materials as part of the collection, transportation, sorting and conditioning of materials.
The proposed regulation will include the time period within which municipalities are permitted to correct information entered in their annual declarations and contains a prohibition against compensation being paid to a municipality that (on June 30 of the year following the year for which compensation is owed) did not send its declaration to Recyc-Quebec.
Rosalind Cooper, LL.B., is a partner with Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP in Toronto, Ontario. Contact Rosalind at email@example.com