The Six Nations has joined with citizens group HALT (Haldimand Against Landfill Transfers) to fight an expansion of the old Edwards landfill in Haldimand County in Southern Ontario. The expansion is being appealed to Ontario’s Environmental Review Tribunal.
In its application for appeal filed March 7, the band council objects because of aboriginal and treaty rights and worries about its impact on the environment. It also cites the area occupied by the Brooks Road landfill as being part of a land claim.
In February Ontario Ministry of the Environment approved Mississauga-based Haldimand-Norfolk Sanitary Landfill Inc. (HNSL) to amend the landfill’s certificate of approval and increase the amount of waste accepted by Edwards to 500 tonnes per day from nine tonnes. HALT, formed last fall to fight the expansion, is worried about potential toxins leaking from the dormant landfill into nearby wells and the Grand River. There’s also concern about garbage from other communities being dumped in Haldimand County.
The ministry received 155 comments on the proposal. According to the ministry, Edwards can only receive municipal trash from Haldimand, but it can accept industrial, commercial and institutional waste from across Ontario.
The ministry approval also required HNSL to start clean up of the dump and dispose of any liquid and hazardous waste at a licensed disposal facility. The company, which has cut down trees on the property and run afoul of Haldimand’s tree cutting bylaw, had to begin clean up work by last Friday.
Ministry spokeswoman Mimi Gilbert said the ministry determined increasing the disposal limit would have no adverse effects and coincided with approval given to HNSL to redesign the facility.
Haldimand council has voted 5-1 not to continue its opposition to expanding dumping restrictions at the facility, which is just east of Cayuga off Highway 3.