Waste Management Enhancements

We are expecting an announcement later this year from the provincial government concerning new rules for waste management. We do not know if the changes will lead to expansions of responsibilities for local governments or more responsibilities for the producers of products… more on this as legislation is introduced. However, at the regional level, we are introducing some changes which we expect will increase our waste diversion rates, earn more potential income and be better received by the citizens.

If you have ever attended a home hazardous waste event, then you will probably know the frustration of long lineups and, in many cases, on days that are inconvenient for you. You will be pleased to learn that we are phasing out this practice and establishing permanent home hazardous waste centres. We, in Pelham, already have access to our facility but it is located in Grimsby which is a fair  trek  down the road for many. The Humberstone landfill site in Welland is soon to have this enhanced service all days that the landfill is open. A similar permanent depot will be located in Thorold at the region’s property close to the Walker Brothers landfill site. A drop-off location will also be established in Fort Erie. Many of the materials are sold and the anticipated growth in diversion should cover most of the extra costs of having these permanent facilities and take much frustration off the backs of taxpayers as they will no longer endure the inconvenience of the home hazardous waste drop-off days.

Again, in the interest of service and improved diversion, the region’s website www.niagararegion.ca has an enquiry service on the homepage to allow new homeowners to find out about their waste pickup options. You simply enter your community, street and number to retrieve this information. Better than this simple service, you can screen a long list of items to determine the proper method of disposal: garbage, blue box, grey box or the green bin recycling. In some cases it is unclear which disposal option is correct. Check out egg cartons or fireplace ashes to see which option is recommended.For those with young children you might make a game out of this exercise to better inform your family and to create more citizens who are sensitive to the proper treatment of waste and the various options for disposal.

Brian Baty is a Niagara Regional Councillor for the Town of Pelham and a member of the Waste Management Steering Committee brian.baty@niagararegion.ca