March 6, 2006

No GTA waste at expanded Ottawa landfill, says WM

Waste Management of Canada (WM) has no plans to accept waste from Toronto or any other municipality within the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) at its Carp Road landfill in Ottawa, which the company is proposing to expand.

WM was responding to reports that the proposed expansion could accommodate waste from the GTA with specific reference to the company's contract with the Peel Region. Last October, the company signed a 20-year contract with the region for the disposal of solid waste from Peel Region. This waste is currently being shipped to Michigan, and WM says if the border is closed, it will fulfill its contractual responsibility by sending the region's waste to one or more of its other Ontario landfills capable of accommodating the waste. This will not include the Ottawa facility, the company noted.

WM further said it will continue to reserve up to 90% of its Ottawa landfill capacity for the city of Ottawa, with the remaining 10% allocated for eastern Ontario.

In addition to expanding the recycling, composting and disposal capacity at the Carp Road operation, WM is proposing to capture landfill gas to generate electricity-four megawatts (MW) initially, eventually increasing to approximately 13 MW.

WM's proposal also provides for enhanced environmental protection at the landfill, with features such as a double composite liner system more than three metres thick, and systems for leachate collection and treatment and for comprehensive monitoring of groundwater, surface water and landfill gas.

WM will be undertaking a comprehensive Environmental Assessment (EA) process for its proposal, starting with preparation of a draft terms of reference document. This was released in January for public comment. The company hopes to submit a final version, incorporating input from the community, to the Minister of Environment in May and hopes the process can be completed in two to three years.

Opportunities for public consultation will be provided throughout the process, including open house information sessions, and WM has set up an information line and Web site on the proposal: 1-866-332-6145, www.ottawalandfill.wm.com.

More information is also available from Mike Walter, WM's senior district manager, landfills, for eastern Ontario, 613/831-5363.

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