Solid Waste & Recycling

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Waste Initiatives and Developments Across Canada (November 01, 2004)

Opposition continues to B.C.'s Ashcroft Ranch landfill...


Opposition continues to B.C.’s Ashcroft Ranch landfill

The proposal is to transform the Ashcroft Ranch in British Columbia’s lower mainland into a landfill site that would be the largest in the province’s history continues to face significant opposition. The argument being made by landfill opponents is that if residents pursued recycling more aggressively the facility would not be required.

The Greater Vancouver Regional District Board (GVRD) met recently to discuss sending the project to the environmental approval stage. Advisors to GVRD say the landfill is necessary in order to meet waste disposal needs, which are projected at 500,000 tonnes annually notwithstanding reductions in waste. The intent is to construct the landfill, which is expected to last more than 50 years, in three years time.

B.C.’s EPR regulation in limbo

British Columbia has proposed a new Extended Producer Responsibility Regulation for the province, but the fate of that regulation remains unknown. The regulation is the result of efforts over a period of 18 months, aimed at improving stewardship in the province.

These efforts began with a discussion paper released by the Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection in February, 2003 that was entitled “Product Stewardship Regulation Review: Discussion Paper.” The paper was intended to promote discussions regarding the adequacy of existing stewardship regulations. In September, 2003, the ministry issued another document entitled “Intentions Paper: Extended Producer Responsibility Regulation, which outlined the direction for development of a regulation for industry product stewardship programs.

British Columbia has issued its long-awaited Recycling Regulation, almost 10 months after the passage of enabling legislation — Bill 52. The new regulation concerns beverage containers and residuals recycling. The schedule for beverage containers explicitly exempts milk, which remains free of deposit in B.C. Regulation of lead acid batteries, tires and electronic equipment is expected at a later date. (See B.C.’s new legislation under “Posted Documents” at www.solidwastemag.com)

Ontario framework for land disposal regulation

The Ontario Ministry of the Environment has released a document entitled “Land Disposal Restrictions: Framework for a Regulation” that outlines a proposal for a regulation that would be promulgated under Ontario’s Environmental Protection Act and would prohibit the land disposal of hazardous wastes unless such wastes are treated or meet certain requirements.

The regulation would set out prohibitions on the disposal of wastes on land that would apply to onsite and offsite landfilling, landfarming and other forms of land disposal. It would also establish new treatment standards for different types of hazardous wastes, and would require that wastes satisfy these standards before they can be disposed of on land. The standards would identify specific technology or a concentration level that must be met, and would provide special treatment standards for certain waste types, such as hazardous debris and contaminated soils that are hazardous. The proposal also envisions restrictions on dilution as a means of treatment to satisfy the required standards.

The regulation would establish new notification, certification and reporting requirements that would apply to the generators of waste that are subject to the restrictions set out in the regulation; to the companies treating and processing such wastes; and to receivers disposing of these wastes.

Amendment to Quebec used-oil regulation

A draft amendment to the “Recovery and Reclamation of Used Oils, Oil or Fluid Containers and Used Filters Regulation” under the Environment Quality Act in Quebec has been proposed. The intent of the amendment is to remove reference to the type of container in which used oil is initially marketed in order to ensure that recovery and reclamation requirements for used oils will apply to all used oils of the same nature notwithstanding the container in which the oils are initially marketed. The regulation previously included a reference to containers of 50 litres or less.

Plastics in municipal waste focus

The Environment and Plastics Industry Council (EPIC) has recently made a decision to focus on plastics in municipal waste streams with a view to improving responsible use and recovery of plastic resources. The intent is to employ a consultant to work directly at the municipal level across the province in Ontario and to conduct consultations. After the work is completed in Ontario, a consultant will be appointed for Quebec and then British Columbia. EPIC is a council of the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA).

Ontario nutrient management reg clarified

Ontario’s Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs has proposed an amendment to the existing Nutrient Management Regulation under the Nutrient Management Act, 2002. The current regulation requires all existing large livestock farms, defined as operations that generate 300 or more “nutrient units” a year, to have an approved nutrient management strategy and plan by July 1, 2005. The strategy must outline how much manure and other nutrient materials will be generated and stored and where they will be used, and the plan assesses the appropriate rate at which the manure and other nutrients are applied to land.

In recognition that some owners of existing large livestock farms may find it challenging to complete all the requirements by July 1, 2005, the proposed amendments will exempt existing large livestock farms from some of the requirements for a limited period of time. In order for owners or operators to avail themselves of this exemption, they must submit a nutrient management strategy to the Director on or before July 1, 2005 which will then extend the timeframe for submission of a nutrient management plan to no later than December 31, 2005.

Rosalind Cooper, LL.B. is a partner with Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP, with offices across Canada. Ms. Cooper is based in Toronto, Ontario. E-mail Rosalind at rcooper@tor.fasken.com


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