Toronto's garbage trucks angers Sarnia mayor
A fatal garbage truck accident on Highway 401 in southwestern Ontario has the mayor of Sarnia reiterating his demand that Toronto change its garbage disposal plan.
A Brampton-area truck driver was killed on Friday morning near London while hauling a shipment of trash to Michigan.
The fiery accident spread garbage across the highway and closed the busy route for most of the day.
Sarnia Mayor Mike Bradley says it's time to stop the "cavalcade" of garbage trucks rumbling through southwestern Ontario from Toronto and other cities. He says municipalities should deal with waste in their "own backyard."
"It's not responsible in this day and age to be trucking your waste all that distance and having all those negative impacts of the emissions and the impact on people that are on those highways too," Bradley told CTV Toronto by telephone on Saturday.
Toronto has been sending its trash to Michigan since 1998. Between 300 and 400 trucks make the trek each day.
Last year, however, the city completed the purchase of the Green Lane landfill near St. Thomas, south of London.
Five per cent of Toronto's trash is already being sent to Green Lane as Toronto begins shifting away from dumping in Michigan. The current agreement with the state ends in 2010.
London Coun. Cheryl Miller has also said her city should be receiving more funds as part of the Green Lane deal to offset costs such as road wear and tear caused by the trucks.
Responding to the concerns, Toronto Mayor David Miller said Saturday the city is continually reducing the number of shipments.
"One of the reasons we want to get to 70 per cent diversion (by 2010) and are putting out the new recycling bins and the new pay-as-you-throw garbage (plan) is exactly that, to reduce our impact on the environment," he said.
Miller says the Green Lane site has the capacity to accept Toronto's trash for at least 20 years, and the landfill will be a moneymaker for the city as they will accept trash from other municipalities.
Coun. Doug Holyday says Toronto should again look at incineration.
"In Durham they're looking at incineration, in Peel they already do the incineration," he said.
"In Paris, France, they do incineration, and 16 per cent of their hydro power comes from the result of that."
Meanwhile, Coun. Denzil Minnan-Wong told CTV Toronto there is talk about transporting Toronto's green bin waste to a location near London, which would send even more trucks along Highway 401.
With a report from CTV Toronto's Naomi Parness and files from The Canadian Press