Environmental legistlation

New residual materials management remains on the program

Le Courrier parlementaire©, Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Even though Minister Pierre Arcand has his hands full with the shale gas issue, he intends to go forward over the next two weeks with the two proposed bills placed on the order paper by his predecessor, Line Beauchamp. One concerns residual materials management and the other imposes higher fines on polluters.

Residual materials management
Bill 88 on residual materials management was at the detailed study stage with only five articles remaining to be adopted when the session adjourned last June. With the bill so close to completion, his cabinet assures us that Minister Arcand has no intention of back-tracking.

The provisions of the bill ban the disposal of paper and carton by 2013, and putrescible materials by 2020. These materials will therefore need to be recycled and, consequently, funding for new recycling equipment must be found. The cost of biomethanization and composting installations to treat putrescible materials has been evaluated at $650 million and will be financed through charges on “each metric tonne of residual materials sent for disposal.”  

Since the June 23, 2006, adoption of the Regulation respecting the charges payable for the disposal of residual materials, 85% of amounts collected for each metric tonne of residual materials disposed of has been redistributed to municipalities.  

Since the first redistribution that took place in December 2006, nearly $182 million has been redistributed to 769 municipalities. A second payment of $29.8 million was made in December 2009 to 760 municipalities. Each municipality has received an average subsidy of $2.58 for each dollar spent on the management of its residential residual materials.

Hike in compensation rate
The government’s bill will also gradually increase the compensation private industry pays to municipalities, from the current 50% of net costs of curbside recycling programs to 66% in 2010, 80% in 2011 and 2012, 90% in 2013 and 2014, and finally 100% in 2015 and thereafter.

This measure will encourage municipalities to increase the recovery rate of materials placed in recycling bins. Press media will contribute with ad space in their publications to raise awareness.

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