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What’s in a name? The Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change has renamed its longstanding Waste Management Policy Branch the “Resource Recovery Policy Branch“. The renaming is part of Minister Glenn Murray’s vision of a low-carbon circular economy, and of waste management as part of his action on climate change.

Meanwhile, the Resource Recovery Policy branch has wound up its consultations on the latest, greatest plan to replace the Waste Diversion Act.

The new law, promised to be introduced this fall, will be quite different from the minority government’s last attempt, Bill 91. The new statute itself is planned to be very general, leaving most important details to be set out later in Provincial Policy Statements and in material-specific regulations.

The new law will likely be called the “Resource Recovery Act”. It is to be based primarily on producer responsibility, physical and financial, for the wastes created by their products. The concept sounds much like the main outlines of the British Columbia recycling model, and would entail wrenching changes for Ontario’s existing waste management and recycling systems.

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