8. Waste Export Reduction Planning
Section 188 of CEPA 1999 creates a new authority for the Minister of the Environment. The Minister may require an exporter or class of exporters of hazardous waste or prescribed non-hazardous waste for final disposal to submit and implement a plan "for the purpose of reducing or phasing out" those exports. Once such a requirement is imposed, the Minister may refuse to issue an export permit if the plan is not submitted or implemented.
Section 191(g) of CEPA 1999 authorizes the Government to develop regulations respecting these plans, "taking into account: i) the benefit of using the nearest appropriate facility, and ii) changes in the quantity of goods the production of which generates hazardous waste to be disposed of by an exporter or class of exporters."
Environment Canada proposes to use the Section 188 authority in a manner consistent with its over-riding emphasis on pollution prevention under CEPA 1999. In most cases, therefore, it will require waste reduction planning where it perceives an opportunity to promote pollution prevention.
The new regulations will support the implementation of this new authority by including provisions modeled on the pollution prevention planning provisions in Part 4 of CEPA 1999. These provisions will clarify the Minister's authority to require waste reduction plans, including the obligation to meet deadlines and submit various declarations of progress. They also will confirm the Minister's authority to specify the levels of export reduction to be achieved.
In addition, it is proposed that the new regulations require that all notices for exports for final disposal include a certification from the exporter that it has examined options for waste minimization and recycling. This requirement will be very similar to the requirement in Division 3 of Part 7 of CEPA 1999 that all applicants for an ocean disposal permit "demonstrate that appropriate consideration has been given" to the waste management hierarchy, and that states that a permit shall be refused "if opportunities exist to re-use, recycle or treat the waste ... without undue risks to human health or the environment or disproportionate costs."11
As particular environmental concerns arise, Environment Canada may request additional information from the exporter or require a waste reduction plan under Section 188. It will be important to ensure that the definition of exporter applicable to this section of the regulations encompasses the original generator, requiring the original generator of the waste as well as the waste management company notifying as the exporter to prepare the waste reduction plan.
11 See CEPA 1999, Section 127 and Schedule 6, Paragraphs 5 and 6.
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