Halton Hills and North Halton newspapers
Region plan aims to extend life of landfill
Independent & Free Press (Georgetown, ON), 21 Jun 2006, p. 1, 4

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A `made-in-Halton' solution designed to lengthen the life of the Region's landfill by six to eight years has been given the thumbs-up by a regional committee and is now off to council for approval today (Wednesday). The plan, called the 2006-2010 Solid Waste Management Strategy, was presented to the planning and public works committee for endorsement last Wednesday. It contains 12 key components-- ranging from implementing a region-wide GreenCart compost pickup program to enhancing the promotion and education of waste diversion programs-- and an ultimate goal of increasing the current diversion rate from 42.6 per cent to about 60 per cent. "What we're really trying to do is develop a sustainable solution," said Halton Director of Waste Management Rob Rivers. "We really have to act now to be proactive." Rivers detailed the recent changes that've been made to the document for the committee. He said the strategy now includes: · Enhanced electronics recycling · An expansion of what can be put in Blue Boxes, where viable · The development of programs to encourage and facilitate the three Rs-- reduce, reuse and recycle-- in the industrial/commercial/industrial (ICI) sector

The investigation of technologies that convert waste into energy. A report from Commissioner of Planning and Public Works Peter Crockett explained that, "The electronics recycling, additional Blue Box materials and ICI recycling can be addressed through the next waste collection and recycling (contract) tender." The contract expires in January, 2008. Other initiatives in the strategy include conducting waste composition studies, harmonizing waste management service levels across the region and advocating to the provincial government on the promotion of waste reduction and product stewardship initiatives. The strategy also details what's under consideration for 2010 and beyond, such as implementing a `user pay' waste collection system with bag limits, using new waste processing technologies and setting up additional drop-off centres for household materials, hazardous materials and large recyclables. Burlington Councillor Jack Dennison questioned why the user pay system and bag limits are being put off to beyond 2010. Rivers referred back to survey responses the Region received on waste management that he said indicated residents want to see Halton reach the 60 per cent waste diversion rate through current mechanisms and that bringing in user pay now would be "leap frogging" some other initiatives. The survey showed only 24 per cent of residents' asked in the urban area supported a user pay system, while 37 per cent in the rural area and 21 per cent in rural hamlets favoured the concept. Crockett said staff could report back on the bag limit issue. Halton Hills Mayor Rick Bonnette also questioned why the Region wouldn't want to look at reducing the bag limit to at least four now. The current limit is six. Rivers explained changing the limit now would impact on the current waste collection contract, noting the best time to consider the issue would in the next contract. Dennison then put forward a motion calling for the strategy to be simply received for information and the document's recommended programs be further reviewed and updated in a further report next spring, but it was defeated. The new plan provides an update to the 1999 Solid Waste Management Strategy. It was developed by the Region in co-operation with the joint municipal/regional waste management committee. Achieving that higher waste diversion rate will increase annual diversion program operating costs from the current $21.7 million to $28.5 million. Halton's landfill is currently expected to reach capacity by 2023.

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21 Jun 2006
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Rivers, Rob ; Crockett, Peter ; Dennison, Jack ; Bonnette, Rick
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Region plan aims to extend life of landfill