Ontario Gives Municipalities More Say in Landfill Approvals

INGERSOLL – Ontario is helping to ensure strong environmental oversight and building healthier communities by modernizing the environmental assessment program and proposing to give municipalities, including those in Oxford County more say in landfill approvals.

“Our government recognizes the importance of autonomy in local decision making and believe that landfills should be located in communities that want them,” said Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks. “This made-in-Ontario approach would help ensure there is local support from the communities most directly impacted by the siting of a landfill before it is approved, while providing certainty for landfill proponents.”

As part of the recently proposed changes to the Environmental Assessment Act, aimed at modernizing Ontario’s environment assessment program to support COVID-19 recovery efforts, the government is proposing to give host and nearby municipalities with residential use within 3.5 kilometres more say during the approval process for new large landfills.

“I welcome the proposed changes which would allow municipalities like those here in Oxford more of a say in the location of future landfill sites,” said Oxford MPP Ernie Hardeman. “We have long been advocating to give local councils the right to approve the location of new landfills in their communities and I am very pleased that our government plans to fulfill a direct commitment to provide greater autonomy to Ontario’s municipalities on this important issue.”

“The passing of Bill 197 will be a red-letter day for municipal governments,” said Ted Comiskey, Mayor of Ingersoll and Chair of the Demand the Right Coalition of Ontario Municipalities. “From that day forward, communities impacted by new landfill proposals will be on a level playing field with the waste management companies who seek to develop them. I want to again thank both Minister Yurek and our Oxford MPP, Ernie Hardeman, for their work in making this happen.”

“This initiative marks a significant milestone for the many people and groups who have been advocating for our communities to have a say in their future,” said Larry Martin, Warden of Oxford County. “On behalf of County Council, thank you to the Province, to our mayors, and to our citizens for seeing this commitment through. Now, our residents can know that their feedback and the public dialogue can have greater impact.”

Providing municipalities with a say in landfill siting approvals is a key commitment in the Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan to balance a healthy economy with a healthy environment and keep our province clean and beautiful.


  • Over 140 municipalities have requested the right to approve landfills in or adjacent to their communities.
  • An information notice is available on the environmental registry for public awareness on proposed legislative changes to the Environmental Assessment Act.
  • Ontario is moving forward on transitioning the Blue Box Program to a full producer responsibility model. The first group of municipalities or First Nations will transfer responsibility of their programs to producers starting in 2023.


Comment on the Municipal Say in Landfills Approval Process

Read the Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan

Read the Waste Discussion Paper


Media inquiries please contact:

Ernie Hardeman, MPP Oxford

(519) 537-5222