October 17, 2003

York Region proceeds with Request for Proposals for new Waste Management Technologies

NEWMARKET In the week of October 27, 2003, the Regional Municipality of York will issue a Request for Proposals (RFP) for new technologies that provide cost-effective waste management solutions that reduce reliance on landfills.
The RFP follows a Request for Expressions of Interest (REOI) issued by the City of Toronto, in July 2003.  The RFP will ask bidders pilot test their technology at a small-scale demonstration facility for five years and/or at a large-scale commercial facility for 10 years.
"The RFP is actually two-fold," said Regional Chair and CEO Bill Fisch.  "Because we are considering emerging technologies, we want to ensure that we have a waste management solution that can function on a small scale, but that is commercially viable on a large scale."
The demonstration scale facility must use thermal technology and be able to process up to 20,000 tonnes of waste per year.  The commercial facility must be able to process up to 70,000 tonnes per year but seek to find a technology that will divert the maximum amount of material from landfill.  Both must reduce reliance on landfills, meet all regulatory requirements, produce marketable by-products and be operational in 36 months.
York Region currently ships its waste to two landfills in Michigan and one in Southwold Township, near St. Thomas Ontario.  With the increased difficulties and lengthier time associated with border crossings to Michigan, and a lack of additional landfill in Ontario, the Region teamed up with the City of Toronto and other Greater Toronto Area municipalities to source and test new technologies that reduce reliance on landfills.
"Even with an open border, the costs of shipping our trash to Michigan aren't sustainable over the long-term," said Richmond Hill Mayor Bill Bell, Acting Chair of the Region's Solid Waste Management Committee.  "The delays our trucks are facing for return trips are costing taxpayers more and more.  Diverting our waste is the only way to ensure that these costs remain manageable."
Staff are expected to report back to Regional Council in early 2004 to make recommendations on which technology will be used for the pilot project.

With the pilot project, the Region hopes to develop a long-term waste management solution that focuses on increased recycling. 
As part of this strategy, York Region, the City of Toronto and the Regions of Peel and Durham will also be jointly issuing an RFP to process 300,000 tonnes of source separated organics to assist in the diversion process.
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, the services we offer and links to our nine area municipalities, please visit our Web site at: www.region.york.on.ca

Contact:   Michael Kemp, Corporate Communications, York Region
- (905) 830-4444 or 1-877-464-9675, ext. 1232
- Email: michael.kemp@region.york.on.ca

The Regional Municipality of York is committed to providing cost-effective, quality services that respond to the needs of our rapidly growing communities.  York Region is comprised of the following nine area municipalities:  Aurora, East Gwillimbury, Georgina, King, Markham, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, Vaughan and Whitchurch-Stouffville.  For more information, visit our Web site at:  www.region.york.on.ca

Contact: Patrick Casey, Senior Media Relations Specialist, York Region

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