February 17, 2011
Media Release

The Regional Municipality of York holds first-place position in waste diversion among Large Urban Municipalities

York Region maintains leader’s position for three consecutive years
NEWMARKET – The Regional Municipality of York is proud to be named the leader in waste diversion among Large Urban Municipalities by Waste Diversion Ontario (WDO).
In the just-released 2009 results, York Region’s waste diversion rate of 57 per cent has been ranked No. 1 in the Large Urban Municipalities category for the third year in a row.  York Region’s 2009 diversion rate ranked No. 3 overall in Ontario from a total of 217 municipalities.

“These numbers are a clear sign that York Region residents have taken the message of “reduce, reuse, recycle and recover” to heart and are to be commended for their efforts,” said York Region Chairman and CEO Bill Fisch.  “These results support Regional Council’s decisions to provide the services necessary to achieve and maintain our role as a leader in waste diversion.  Our nine municipalities partner with us to deliver these initiatives and their ongoing collaboration has greatly contributed to our success.”

WDO diversion numbers account for the amount of waste diverted from disposal after the removal of items not acceptable for recycling.  Large Urban Municipalities account for more than 32-per cent of Ontario’s total population.

The 2009 WDO results indicate a four-per cent increase from the 2008 performance and an 11-per cent increase from 2006.  In 2009, York Region diverted approximately 200,000 tonnes of waste from disposal through the success of our award-winning diversion initiatives, including weekly curb-side Green Bin and Blue Box collection, Community Environmental Centres and Household Hazardous Waste depots.  The Green Bin program received a record-high quantity of material in 2009, with approximately 68,000 tonnes diverted from disposal.

“Historically, York Region residents have embraced initiatives benefitting our environment,” said Town of Richmond Hill Regional Councillor Vito Spatafora, Chair of the Region’s Environmental Services Committee.  “Planned enhancements to the Region’s waste diversion program will undoubtedly drive our rates higher in the years to come.”

2010 Waste Diversion accomplishments:
• Continued advocacy for “Extended Producer Responsibility” programs to increase diversion of waste materials
• Approval of the Environmental Assessment for the energy-from-waste facility in the community of Clarington in Durham Region by the Ministry of the Environment
In 2011, Waste Management initiatives:
• Driving forward with development of the Integrated Waste Management Master Plan
• Improving efficiency of the Green Bin program by making compostable bag liners mandatory as of May 1
• Opening the Elgin Mills Road Community Environmental Centre in Richmond Hill
• Upgrading the Georgina Transfer Station to include Community Environmental Centre design features
• Equipment upgrades at York Region’s material recovery facility to improve Blue Box processing capacity and sorting efficiency
• Initiating design and construction of the Durham/York Energy from Waste facility in Clarington
• Continuing to work with Dongara to improve their processing capacity to achieve greater diversion from landfill     
For more information on Waste Management, please visit www.york.ca/waste
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, please visit www.york.ca

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Media Contact: Barbara Moss, Corporate Communications, York Region
Phone: 905-830-4444 Ext. 1237 / Cell: 905-505-5775
Email: barbara.moss@york.ca

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