Metro Vancouver will securely dispose of
approximately 1,500 tonnes of repatriated Canadian waste shipped from the
Philippines at its Waste-to-Energy Facility in Burnaby.
The Waste-to-Energy Facility was selected by
Environment and Climate Change Canada as the preferred choice for disposal due
to its proximity to the Port of Vancouver and its designation as a facility
authorized to receive waste under the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s International
Waste Directive. The facility, which has operated for over 25 years and
produces enough electricity to power approximately 16,000 homes, is the most
environmentally sustainable option to recover energy and resources from waste
that cannot be reused or recycled.
“For decades, Metro Vancouver’s Waste-to-Energy
Facility has responsibly processed waste material from the international
airline and shipping industries, as well as other materials designated for
secure disposal by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency,” said Metro Vancouver
Board Chair Sav Dhaliwal. “We have the technology and capacity to safely and efficiently
handle this type of material.”
According to characterization studies conducted
in the Philippines in 2014 and 2015, the material mostly consists of paper and
mixed plastics with low levels of contaminants such as electronics and
household waste. It was initially shipped from the Port of Vancouver to the
Philippines by a private business for recycling in 2013 and 2014.
“Strict handling and disposal criteria must be
followed whenever there is a risk of biological or agricultural contamination,”
said Jack Froese, Chair of Metro Vancouver’s Zero Waste Committee.
“Waste-to-Energy is the best option for secure disposal because there is no
potential for contact with wildlife, and no potential for waste to leave the
facility following disposal.”
Metro Vancouver is working with Environment and
Climate Change Canada on the logistics of receiving the waste. Environment and
Climate Change Canada expects the waste to be removed from the Philippines by
the end of June, and it is anticipated that Metro Vancouver will safely dispose
of the waste before the end of the summer.
"With one of the highest
recycling and waste reduction rates in North America and a sustainable system
for managing residual garbage, Metro Vancouver is uniquely capable of safely
disposing of this material in an environmentally responsible manner,” added
The estimated 1,500 tonnes of waste are
equivalent to about two days’ worth of processing capacity for the
“Canada is taking all necessary
measures for the prompt, safe, and environmentally sound disposal of the waste
that was left in the Philippines by a Canadian company,” said the Minister of
Environment and Climate Change, Catherine McKenna. “We are working with Metro Vancouver
to swiftly and safely dispose of the waste upon arrival.”
The material will be accepted as Special Handle
Waste under Metro Vancouver’s Tipping Fee Bylaw, at the rate prescribed in the
bylaw of $250 per tonne. All costs associated with the shipping and disposal of
the waste will be assumed by the Government of Canada.