News Release Archive

  Environment Minister Wayne Adams has unveiled a Solid Waste
  Resource Management Strategy for Nova Scotia that will cut
  in half the amount of waste going to the province's
  landfills by the year 2000.
  An added benefit of the Strategy will be the creation of an
  estimated 600 new jobs in the recycling, collection and
  environmental industries sector.
  The strategy will offer every Nova Scotian an opportunity to
  recycle, end the dumping of organic compostable materials
  and other recyclables in landfills, expand the
  deposit/refund system to cover most beverage containers, and
  reduce the number of landfills in operation by approximately
  The province made a commitment, in the new Environment Act,
  to divert 50% of its solid waste.
  "The time has come to stop throwing away our future. We are
  fouling the earth, and throwing away materials that can be
  turned into products and jobs. We are heeding the call of
  Nova Scotians to stop thinking of solid waste as a problem
  and instead recognizing it as an opportunity to do something
  for our environment and our economy," said Mr. Adams at a
  news conference held at the Lunenburg Regional Recycling and
  Composting Facility in Whynotts Settlement, Lunenburg
  He said the public will be now able to participate in an
  expanded deposit/refund system. All beverage containers,
  except for milk, will be included. The public will pay a
  deposit on all applicable containers and receive a refund
  equalling half the deposit upon return. The other half of
  the deposit will go to the Resource Recovery Fund (RRF) to
  assist municipalities with their diversion and recycling
  programs. This is similar to the program currently employed
  with liquor containers.
  All new landfills will have to meet stricter guidelines to
  prevent leachate and other associated problems.
  Beginning April 1, 1996, beverage containers, corrugated
  cardboard, newsprint, scrap tires, automotive batteries and
  all leaf and yard waste will be banned from landfill sites.
  A year later the ban will be expanded to include waste
  paint, automotive antifreeze and all compostable organic
  material from industrial, commercial and institutional
  Effective April 1, 1998, steel and tin cans, glass food
  containers, and plastics will no longer be accepted for
  disposal in landfills.
  To ensure cost effectiveness for the taxpayer, municipal
  units will be encouraged to participate in regional
  The province will be divided into seven solid waste
  management regions. The department has used municipal
  studies on solid waste cooperation as the guide to the
  establishment of the boundaries of the regions. If municipal
  units can provide suggestions to improve the efficiency of
  the regional system, the minister will consider alterations. 
  The strategy will reduce the number of landfills in the
  province from the current number of 40 to between seven and
  The open burning of solid waste will be banned effective
  April 1, 1996. This is three months later than originally
  planned in order to allow municipal units that use open
  burning more time to prepare alternative arrangements.
  However, incineration that meets the national air emission
  standards will be allowed; but, municipal units using waste
  to energy incinerators will not be allowed to use the
  generation of energy in factoring their 50% diversion
  An integral part of the strategy is the creation of jobs. In
  order to ensure that Nova Scotia solid waste resources are
  developed into Nova Scotia based jobs, the strategy includes
  plans for the establishment of processing facilities for
  Industry studies have estimated that up to 900 jobs could be
  created as the result of recycling, diversion and
  composting. The Department of the Environment's own studies
  have indicated a minimum of 600 jobs as a direct result of
  the implementation of the strategy.
  "For example, Nova Scotians discard about one million tires
  annually. Today, they end up clogging landfills, but
  tomorrow they will be a source of paycheques," said the
  The Environmental Industries and Technology Division has
  been working on a plan to establish a scrap tire
  reprocessing facility and expects to have the final details
  completed in the near future.
  The Resource Recovery Fund, a public-private, non-profit
  organization, will be responsible for the marketing of
  recyclable materials in order to ensure Nova Scotia's
  environmental industries have a critical mass of feedstock
  from domestic sources.
  The RRF will sign agreements with the municipalities to buy
  the recyclables they collect. Municipalities will be
  encouraged to partner with the RRF, but will be free to sell
  to other buyers, should they find a better financial offer.
  "This will ensure that the RRF gives municipalities fair
  value for the recyclables they collect," said Mr. Adams.
  The RRF will use the profits of sales of recyclables to
  promote diversion and recycling in its partner
  municipalities. The membership of the board will include
  representatives from industry and government. The RRF has
  been promoting municipal recycling and diversion efforts
  since its creation in 1989.
  "These steps are vital to the environmental, as well as
  economic, health of our province. They are the result of
  nearly two years of consultation with municipalities and the
  public. In effect, what we are doing is casting aside the
  throw-a-way mentality and replacing it with common sense.
  You would not throw money out the window. Then why have we
  for so long allowed ourselves to throw out money in garbage
  bags? It's not garbage, it's a resource, and its time we
  recognized the environmental and economic benefits of
  treating our province with respect," Mr. Adams said.
  The strategy will come into effect April 1, 1996.
  Copies of the Nova Scotia Solid Waste Management Strategy
  can be obtained by calling toll-free 1-800-726-5779, or in
  Metro, 424-2300.
  Contact: Paul McEachern  902-424-5300 
  trp                       Nov. 07, 1995