Decision follows favourable response at public information sessions
NEWMARKET – At a meeting of the Joint Waste Management Group yesterday, consultants working with York Region and Durham Region as part of the Durham York Residual Waste Study confirmed their earlier conclusion that the preferred alternative for managing residual waste is thermal treatment with energy recovery.
The announcement follows a series of six public information centres held in York Region and Durham Region from May 9th to 11th, as well as public deputations, with 80 per cent of the participants in favour of using a controlled combustion technology that yields energy from waste. York Region and Durham Region are co-proponents in the Environmental Assessment (EA) process.
"These public information centres and public deputations were an extremely important part of our residual waste study to receive viewpoints from our residents in how they want waste managed," said York Regional Chair and CEO Bill Fisch. "I'm very pleased to see this progressive project continue to move forward, in order to lessen our dependence on Michigan landfills as a solution to our garbage issues."
The report from the consultants recommended two options for managing residual waste (waste remaining after recycling and composting):
• Thermal Treatment of Municipal Solid Waste and Recovery of Energy followed by Recovery of
Materials from Ash/Char
• Thermal Treatment of Municipal Solid Waste and Recovery of Energy of Solid Recovered Fuel
Both systems use controlled combustion technology to handle residual waste and both recovery energy.
In the first option, recycled metals are recovered following thermal treatment from the ash or char. In second option, recyclable materials, including metals and some plastics are recovered prior to thermal treatment. In both cases, only a small portion goes to landfill.
The consultants' report has recommended selecting either option based on the results of a competitive bid process on a processing facility.
"It is extremely important that we find an effective solution to managing the waste that we cannot recycle or compost, and this process with help us to meet this challenge," said City of Vaughan Regional Councillor Mario Ferri, Chair of the Region's Solid Waste Management Committee. "Following extensive study and input from our residents, we have a clear objective to move towards in the creation of a local, long-term solution that will divert waste from landfills."
In parallel with the Durham York Residual Waste Study, York Region and our local municipalities are also developing a joint Waste Diversion Strategy. The Waste Diversion Strategy focuses on maximizing local waste diversion, composting and recycling efforts so that the amount of residual waste managed under the York Durham EA process is minimized.
Implementation of the various options proposed in the Waste Diversion Strategy is expected to increase the Region's diversion from landfill from a current rate of 34 per cent to an initial rate of 65 per cent by 2008 and as high as 75 per cent by the end of the process.
The consultants' recommendations will be presented at York Region's Solid Waste Management Committee, June 7th at 9 a.m. at the York Region Administrative Centre. The recommendation will be presented for final approval at York Regional Council on June 22nd.
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