Media Release - Minister ignored inconsistencies and residents

Media release issued Monday November 22, 2010

Minister ignored inconsistencies and residents in incinerator approval

Durham Region, Monday November 22 -- Durham Region residents opposing the Durham-York incinerator were disappointed that the Minister of the Environment ignored the concerns of residents and approved the environmental assessment for the incinerator despite a glaring inconsistency in the air pollution limits.

Greater Vancouver - six newspaper articles

The Surrey Leader and other local papers in the lower mainland ran a six part series by Jeff Nagel (BC Local News) on the decision the Greater Vancouver Regional District is currently contemplating. In one scenario, there would be six new incinerators in the region.

In case the articles disappear off the web, PDF reprints are attached to this article (see below).

Part 1 - Burning questions April 30, 2010

Background to Durham Region incinerator issue

This background document was produced May 9, 2010 for media covering the May 13 rally at Queen's Park.

Who: Regional Municipalities of Durham (78.6%) and York (21.4%)
What: a mass-burn waste incinerator, initial capacity 140,000 metric tonnes/year
Where: the preferred site is on the shore of Lake Ontario in Courtice (Municipality of Clarington),

Brief timeline:

  • Current – Ont. Minister of the Environment decision pending.
  • February 26, 2010 – Ministry Review of EA study issued by Ont. MoE staff
  • December 21, 2009 – Addendum to EA study submitted to Ministry
  • November 27, 2009 – “Amended” EA study submitted to Ministry
  • July 31, 2009 – “Final” EA study submitted to Ministry

If approved by the Minister of the Environment, Durham-York’s incinerator operated by Covanta Energy Corp. in Clarington would be the first mass-burn municipal solid waste incinerator built in Ontario since the Algonquin Power "Energy-from-Waste" incinerator in Brampton began operation in 1992.

Toronto Star - Plastic, glass and paper pile up as recyclers close

This story in the Toronto Star illustrates the difficulties with recycling. Waste reduction must remain our priority.

The article also hints that there could be an announcement soon by the Ontario Minister of the Environment about changes to the Waste Diversion Act. Last year, the MoE circulated a policy discussion on extended producer responsibility which, if implemented, could shift the burden of disposal from municipalities and onto the producers, thus giving them incentives to reduce packaging and non-recyclable materials.

Greenpeace Researcher Misquoted by Toronto Star

Update: Dave Martin, Policy Adviser, Greenpeace Canada, in a letter to the editor in the Toronto Star, restates Greenpeace's opposition to incineration. As well, Dr. Paul Johnston, Principal Scientist, Greenpeace Research Laboratories, University of Exeter, responds in a blog posted on the site.

Toronto Star - Three Articles on Incineration

This series of three articles on incineration and the Durham Region incinerator proposal was published in the Toronto Star over the Easter weekend. The Star also published an editorial Tuesday April 6 that could have been written by an incinerator lobbyist.

The sub-headline "Even Greenpeace has stopped objecting" in part 3 is taken out of context. Greenpeace Canada has posted a blog entry by Dr. Paul Johnston from the Exeter lab at Greenpeace International.

Waste-to-energy incineration is both noxious and expensive

Waste-to-energy incineration is both noxious and expensive
by Joyce Nelson
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
February 1, 2010

This article has special meaning to Durham residents because it shows that Durham Region is seen as "paving the way" for more incinerators in Ontario and across Canada.

Unprecedented Onslaught of Incinerator Proposals - Watershed Sentinel

A must-read series of three articles in The Watershed Sentinel by author and journalist Joyce Nelson. Part 1 of the series looks at the threat to recycling that multi-stage waste-to-energy (WTE) incineration poses. Part 2 looks at mass-burn waste-to-energy (WTE) incineration, with a focus on Covanta Energy. Part 3 considers gasification WTE companies Plasco Energy Group and Aquilini Renewable Energy, and the Federal government’s involvement in WTE incineration.

Incinerators, Part 1 - Waste-to-Energy Proposals

Across Canada, the US, the UK, Europe, and Asia, communities are facing an unprecedented onslaught of proposals for new incinerators. In July 2008, Friends of the Earth released a map showing dozens of planned new incinerator sites across the UK. The British government has committed billions to new incineration, while cutting budgets for recycling by 30 per cent.

Media Release - Clarington Councillors Vote Down Incinerator EA Independent Review

Clarington, Tue Feb 9, 2009 - Clarington residents say they feel abandoned
by the Clarington councillors who would welcome a polluting incinerator
but failed to act to ensure that public health is safeguarded. Councillors
voted 4-3 Monday evening to accept a recommendation against hiring expert
reviewers in the next phase of the environmental assessment for the Durham
incinerator proposed for the lakeshore in Courtice.

"The majority of Clarington councillors do not understand the
environmental assessment process or their role as representatives of the

Media release - Durham Incinerator Environmental Assessment Review Not On Time or Budget

Attn: News Editors

Thu Jan 14 2010


Durham Region — The environmental assessment study for Durham Region's waste incinerator project is not "on time and budget" as was previously stated by Durham Works Commissioner Cliff Curtis, say Durham residents watching the project. Residents are also alarmed that Durham Region councillors on the Works committee appear unconcerned about the possibility that the environmental assessment review will be flawed and, if the incinerator were approved, that human health and the environment could be impacted.

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