Whitby, Ontario – In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Regional Municipalities of Durham and York (the Regions) have received a temporary Emergency Amendment to the Environmental Compliance Approval (ECA) at the Durham York Energy Centre (DYEC) to process an additional 20,000 tonnes of garbage, for an annual total of 160,000 tonnes of garbage until December 31, 2020. The ECA for the DYEC currently allows the facility to process up to a maximum of 140,000 tonnes per year. The DYEC, as currently constructed, can process an additional 20,000 tonnes of waste with the existing equipment.

With a significant number of residents remaining at home, both Durham and York Regions are seeing an increase in the amount of garbage being placed at the curb. In response, Durham has relaxed garbage bag limits from four to six bags. The Regions will continue completing an Environmental Screening Process and an ECA amendment to increase the annual processing capacity at the DYEC from 140,000 tonnes per year to 160,000 tonnes per year, which began in 2019. The facility, as it exists, can process the additional materials while meeting the strict emissions limits set by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. The Regions anticipate completion of the Environmental Screening Process and subsequent ECA amendment during 2020.

Durham Region has and will continue to make changes to waste programs to ensure physical distancing and to protect collection and waste management workers. Changes at the waste management facilities have also been implemented including allowing fewer residents to enter a facility at any given time.

“The temporary Emergency Amendment to the Environmental Compliance Approval is required to process the increased volume of garbage we are seeing at the Durham York Energy Centre during this unprecedented pandemic event. Durham and York Regions continue to work with our various contractors to ensure that the DYEC, as well as our other Regional facilities, can continue operating to meet the needs of the community, while complying with all reporting and operational requirements associated with the various regulations and approvals. Given the pace at which the situation is evolving, Durham Region will continue to monitor and assess programs as needed.”

 - Gioseph Anello, Acting Director of Waste Management

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Media inquiries:

The Regional Municipality of Durham:
Emily Meek – Communications Co-ordinator 905-668-7711 ext. 3542 or emily.meek@durham.ca