The Regional Municipality Of York


York Region calls for bold steps to address Ontario-wide waste diversion

Newmarket – The Regional Municipality of York continues to voice the need to take strong action for an Ontario-wide effort to reduce litter and waste in our communities.

“Reducing waste across our communities will require bold steps and a collective effort from all levels of government and private sectors,” said York Region Chairman and CEO Wayne Emmerson. “Municipalities such as York Region provide a ground-level perspective when it comes to tangible means to reduce the amount of waste that is produced and keeping it out of landfills.”

York Region provided comments to the province which outline immediate priorities to address a number of municipal concerns and unlock the greatest opportunity to achieve zero waste in Ontario, including:

  • Immediately transition the Blue Box to full producer responsibility to make producers both operationally and financially responsible for end-of-life management of their waste and establish high targets that obligate them to implement deposit return programs to augment the Blue Box program
  • Include the fourth R (Recovery) in waste diversion calculations to recognize the benefits of recovering the energy value of resources; energy generation provides beneficial use and should be recognized under provincial diversion calculations. York Region recognizes the 4th R and in 2018 diverted 94% from landfill through the Durham York Energy Centre and other Energy from Waste contracts
  • Develop Green Bin compostable standards that align with existing processing systems to provide clear rules
  • Take immediate and strong action to eliminate litter and plastic waste going to landfills and waterways, including single-use plastics and problematic materials, through a deadline-driven action plan that includes a used beverage container deposit return program
  • Ensure extended producer responsibility requirements include public spaces and Industrial, Commercial and Institutional sectors to help prevent and reduce litter in communities

“York Region continues to demonstrate leadership in waste management. We have ranked number one in waste diversion within the large urban category for the past five years,” said City of Vaughan Regional Councillor Mario Ferri, Chair of Environmental Services. “These priority areas provide a solid foundation for developing feasible options for waste management policies in the province.”

York Region provided a response to Reducing Litter and Waste in our Communities Discussion paper to Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. Many aspects of the priority areas shared with the province strongly align with York Region’s SM4RT Living waste management master plan.

The Regional Municipality of York consists of nine local cities and towns and provides a variety of programs and services to 1.2 million residents and 52,000 businesses with over 636,600 employees. More information about the Region’s key service areas is available at

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Media Contact:

Masrine Guthrie-Peart, Corporate Communications,
The Regional Municipality of York
Phone: 1-877-464-9675 ext. 77272 or Cell: 905-251-6416

York Region; Waste; waste diversion The Regional Municipality of York en-US Media Release