Province to Shut Down Ontario Tire Stewardship by 2018

Connector Spring 2017

Glen Murray, minister of the environment and climate change, said the Ontario Tire Stewardship, the smallest and least complex of Ontario’s three government-created recycling programs, will be the first eliminated under new legislation designed to improve the recycling process in Ontario.

In a letter sent to the stewardship organization on Feb. 17, Murray gave Executive Director Andrew Horsman a deadline of Oct. 31 to submit a wind-up plan for the province’s waste oversight authority. That plan, Murray noted in a written statement to the Star confirming the letter, “requires the cessation of operations by Dec. 31, 2018.”

Murray’s statement said the stewardship must be “transparent and clear” with the public. It must “avoid disruption” of its tire recycling program until the end date and “not adversely affect Ontario’s tire marketplace.”

Another key point, according to the Ontario Waste Management Association, is the disbursement of the stewardship’s surplus. Last year, the surplus hit $49.5 million – ultimately from consumer eco-fees – and the association questioned where that money would go when the program eventually ended.

Murray’s letter said assets must be managed in a “fair, open and transparent process.”

Horsman, of the tire stewardship, said his office is “evaluating the direction provided” and referred additional questions to the minister or the oversight authority.

The Waste-Free Ontario Act, which came into force in November, will eventually dissolve all three government-created recycling programs for tires, old electronics, and hazardous household waste.

The tire stewardship is currently the only program that has been given a timeline to end its operations. It is headquartered in Etobicoke, where stewardship staff control the collection and movement of used tires. The goal of the new law is to force producers and retailers to take individual responsibility for their products by creating innovative recycling programs.

Source: Toronto Star