January 2, 2006

Waste processor pleads guilty to violating C of A conditions, receives $45K fine

SIMCOE, ONT-Green Bridge Industries recently pleaded guilty to two violations of Ontario's Environmental Protection Act and was fined $45,000 plus victim fine surcharge. The company processes procured unused diapers at its Delhi, Ontario facility, separating and reclaiming the super-absorbent polymer, fibre and plastic, which is baled, stored and eventually sold. A certificate of approval (C of A) from the Ministry of Environment (MOE) allowed Green Bridge to store a maximum of 1,500 metric tonnes of solid non-hazardous waste at its plant site. Following a failed business transaction the company began using unapproved additional storage space on Power Street in Delhi. In May 2003, a fire started outside the Power Street building and spread to the storage space, destroying 5,208 metric tonnes of solid non-hazardous waste which was being stored without approval. The MOE was notified of the incident and a provincial officer concluded that Green Bridge Industries was not in compliance with the EP Act. A cleanup of the site was completed by January 2004 at a cost of $470,196. Green Bridge Industries paid $214,686 of the total, with an insurer paying the remaining $225,000. The company subsequently pleaded guilty to failing to comply with two conditions of its C of A, in violation of section 186(3) of the EP Act, i.e. storing more than 1,500 metric tonnes of material, and storing material at a location other than that specified in its C of A.

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