Oxford MPP Supports Municipalities’ Action on Landfill Proposal

WOODSTOCK — Oxford MPP Ernie Hardeman supports the action of four municipal councils in Oxford that have passed resolutions in opposition of the proposed Southwest Landfill.

Over the last week, Zorra Township, South-West Oxford Township, Ingersoll and Oxford County councils have passed resolutions stating they will not provide a resolution of support for Walker Environmental Group’s Southwest Landfill proposed to be located in Zorra.

“I’m pleased to see that our local councils have made use of the tools provided by our government to empower municipalities to have a say about how landfills impact their communities,” said Hardeman.

In July 2020, the Ontario Government passed Bill 197 which includes an amendment to the Environmental Assessment Act that gives municipalities real say by requiring their support for new landfills to receive approval through the environmental assessment process. The Bill requires that anyone who is submitting an application to the Ministry of Environment must include a resolution of support from the host municipality along with every municipality with residential areas within 3.5 kilometers of the site during the application process. Without this, the proponent’s application is incomplete. The municipal resolutions passed in the last week state each council will not provide the required support. As a result, Walker has put the Southwestern Landfill Environmental Assessment on hold.

“Our government believes landfills should be located in communities that are a willing host,” said Hardeman. “I’ve always said municipalities have a say in where a Tim Horton’s goes, but not in something as significant as where a landfill will go. This is an issue our community and I worked for many years to address.”