September 21, 2006

The Regional Municipality of York files Environmental Study Report for Duffin Creek Water Pollution Control Plant


Final report to Ontario Ministry of Environment addresses Town of Ajax concerns


NEWMARKET – The Regional Municipality of York today filed an Environmental Study Report (ESR) for the Stage 3 expansion for the York Durham Sewage System’s (YDSS) Duffin Creek Water Pollution Control Plant (WPCP).


The ESR represents 27 months of technical and environmental studies that includes a peer review by a panel of six independent Canadian experts.  The detailed report fully documents all public consultation and addresses issues raised by the Town of Ajax regarding their concern for impacts to air quality, water quality, noise and odour as a result of the plant expansion.


Through numerous meetings with Ajax officials and consultants, York Region has made every effort to address their concerns, including a delay in filing the ESR in order to provide additional time for review.


An independent Peer Review confirmed that no significant impacts will result from the expansion of the plant, which is expected to meet or be well below the mandatory compliance levels imposed by the Ministry of the Environment.


“This project is following a comprehensive Environmental Assessment process that has been established by the Ministry of the Environment,” said York Regional Chair and CEO Bill Fisch.  “York Region continues to work closely with the Ministry and the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority to ensure that our projects are built and operate in a manner that is protective of our environment.”


The project is currently undergoing a Schedule “C” Class EA – the strictest of the three options under the Municipal Class EA document.  In addition to the requirements mandated by the EA process, work to date also addresses the Minister’s additional conditions of October 2004 regarding York Region’s YDSS projects.


“The Region’s project team has worked to ensure that the document now before the Ministry is as thorough and complete as possible,” said Town of Markham Regional Councillor Bill O’Donnell, Chair of the Region’s Transportation and Works Committee.  “We are confident that the information provided in the report will continue to meet and, in many cases, surpass Ministry requirements.”


Duffin Creek WPCP was originally built by the Province of Ontario in the mid 1970s, replacing a number of smaller and local plants, which resulted in significantly improved water quality in the surrounding watershed.  The Regional Municipalities of York and Durham assumed ownership/control of the plant in 1997 to serve the residents of York Region as well as Durham Region residents in Pickering and Ajax.


In order to accommodate wastewater flows from projected growth to both Regions, the current WPCP needs to expand by approximately 50 per cent by 2010.


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For more information on the YDSS, please visit and follow the link on the main page titled, “York Durham Sewage System Information.”


Media Contact:         Patrick Casey, Director, Corporate Communications, York Region

                                 Phone:  (905) 830-4444, ext. 1235 or Cell (905) 715-8211


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