Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Hazardous waste event in the fall

Timmins residents will be able to get rid of their hazardous household waste products, likely in September or October. A firm date has not yet been determined.
City council this week authorized its waste management department to set up a one-day hazardous waste collection event in the fall.
The Municipal Hazardous Special Waste (MSHW) program will accept such things as paint, pesticides, household solvents, waste oil and gasoline, old oil filters, auto batteries, household batteries, prescription medicines, pool chemicals, wood preservatives, oven cleaners and aerosal containers.
“We currently have no diversion program in place,” public works supervisor Chris Bazinet told city council this week.
He admitted that many hazardous wastes are being illegally dumped at the Deloro landfill or poured down toilets and drains.
Bazinet explained that a waste disposal company, specially equipped and licensed to handle hazardous wastes would come into the city and set up at a central location, such as a large arena or parking lot.
“Residents will be able to bring their MSHW at no charge,” said Bazinet, who added that similar events are held in towns and cities across the province.
“We are one of the last remaining communities in Ontario not hosting this event,” he said.
The cost of the program is roughly $70,000 to bring in a licenced hazardous waste company to accept the products. The cost of the program will be offset by the province by 60 percent through a program called Stewardship Ontario, said Bazinet. That means the city’s contribution is $28,000.
“Should the event prove to be successful we would like to review the possibility of a year-round program at the Deloro landfill,” he added.
Bazinet said the program is well-worth the money is the sense that it will keep hazardous wastes out of the landfill and raise awareness among the public about the need to dispose of hazardous wastes in a proper manner.
Mayor Tom Laughren noted that disposal of hazardous waste is something he is approached about by city residents on a regular basis. “This program is long overdue.”

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