Availability of SCRF Draft Environmental Assessment for Review

How can the public provide comments on the draft EA?

The draft EA will be available to the public for review for seven weeks from August 31 to October 24, 2018. There are multiple ways to provide comments for consideration in the final EA.

To access the documentation online, the public can visit the project at: www.terrapurestoneycreek.com. The draft EA documentation will also be available as paper copies at the following locations:

  • At Terrapure’s Stoney Creek Regional Facility Office;
  • At the Valley Park Branch Public Library;
  • At the Ministry’s Environmental District Office in Hamilton; and
  • The Ministry’s Environmental Approvals Branch in Toronto

Comments can be submitted via:

  • Email: info@terrapurestoneycreek.com
  • Mail: 65 Green Mountain Road West, Stoney Creek, ON L8J 1X5
  • Phone: 1-844-898-2380
  • Fax: 1-905-549-4515

What’s new in this draft EA report?

The EA report is a compilation of all the work that has been completed over the past 2-and-a-half years. Most of the details in the draft EA have been previously released to the community and stakeholders. The main components that are being newly presented in the draft EA include:

  • A detailed list of commitments and monitoring Terrapure will complete to ensure that the predicted environmental effects identified are monitored during construction, operation and closure/post-closure at the site;
  • Additional approvals and agreements that will be required, should the EA be approved and the capacity increase proceed; and
  • A section outlining the third-party peer review with recommendations by Dr. Kerry Rowe, a renowned landfill expert from Queen’s University’s Department of Engineering.

What feedback did you incorporate as a result of the consultation from Open House #3?

We were pleased with the turnout at the in-person and online Open House #3. There were many good discussions with community members and our technical team. We received feedback and clarifying questions primarily around the detailed impact assessments. More specifically, we made the following changes based on feedback received:

  • Updated the Noise Impact Assessment to reflect revised details regarding background noise;
  • Revised the site specific noise limit to 60dBA, to be more conservative based on updated traffic data; and
  • Conducted testing and included additional information on clay liner leachate compatibility to confirm that there are no effects on the permeability of the clay liner.

Does the Minister or other review agencies “Approve” the draft EA?

No, the draft EA is an additional consultation milestone for stakeholders to provide additional feedback to be considered, where appropriate, before the EA is finalized and submitted to the Minister for consideration.

How will feedback from the draft EA be considered?

Terrapure will review all the feedback stakeholders provide on the draft EA and provide a response on how their comments were considered. This will be documented in the final EA Report. We look forward to continuing to work with the public, review agencies and Indigenous communities over the next 7 weeks to answer their questions and address their feedback.

What happens after the review period?

Once the review period is complete, Terrapure’s team of environmental planners, engineers and scientists will review comments received and determine how they will be considered as part of the preparation of the final EA.

Then, we will prepare the final EA report, which we anticipate submitting to the Minister for approval in early 2019.

Is this the final opportunity for the public to provide input?

No, after this 7-week period to review and provide feedback on the draft EA, there will be at least two more opportunities for the community and stakeholders to have input into the EA. They include:

  • Reviewing and providing comment to the Ministry of the Environment Conservation, and Parks on the Final EA Report (7 weeks)
  • Reviewing and providing comment on the Ministry’s review of the Final EA Report (5 weeks)

PREFERRED OPTION FOR PROPOSED CAPACITY INCREASE

How was the Preferred Option (5) confirmed?

The preferred option was confirmed by taking into consideration feedback from members of the community, agencies, and Indigenous groups. In addition, Terrapure’s team of experts carried out additional technical work to refine the design and specifications of the proposed capacity increase under option 5. This included completing the environmental studies to confirm potential impacts and developing proposed impact management measures and monitoring plans as part of the detailed environmental assessment.

Why is the Option 5 Preferred?

The preferred option was chosen for the following reasons

  • Technically feasible design
  • Meets the proposed capacity being sought through the EA
  • Height increase that can be screened through constructed berms, tree planting, fencing, etc.
  • Effects to the natural environment and surrounding community can be minimized by impact management measures
  • May provide additional funding to the Heritage Green Community Trust and City of Hamilton Compensation Agreement Royalty Fee Program

What is a Detailed Impact Assessment?

The detailed impact assessment involves a much more detailed analysis of the preferred option to better identify the potential impacts on the natural environment and surrounding community.

What are Impact Management Measures?

These are the measures Terrapure’s team of environmental planners, engineers and scientists recommend to manage any potential effects from the preferred option. The preferred option was selected because it has low net impacts on the surrounding community, which will be minimized by impact management measures.

How will feedback from the third Open House be considered?

We will review all the feedback received from stakeholders at the in-person and online open house, as well as our various individual meetings with government review agencies and indigenous communities, to finalize the detailed impact assessment of the preferred option and then begin writing the Draft Environmental Assessment Report. Within the Draft EA Report, we will outline how comments were considered and, if not, why.

What happens next?

Now, our team of environmental planners, engineers and scientists will prepare the Draft Environmental Assessment Report. This document will detail the selection of the preferred option, the detailed impact assessment, the design and operation specifications for the proposed capacity increase, as well as proposed impact management measures and monitoring commitments. The Draft EA Report will also provide a detailed description of all consultation completed throughout the EA, including with public and government stakeholders, as well as indigenous communities.

How else can we stay involved?

There will be at least three more opportunities for the community and stakeholders to have input into the EA. They include:

  • Reviewing and providing comment to Terrapure on the Draft Environmental Assessment Report (6 weeks)
  • Reviewing and providing comment to the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change on the Final EA Report (7 weeks)
  • Reviewing and providing comment on the Ministry’s review of the Final EA Report (5 weeks)
  • We will notify the community and our other stakeholders about these review opportunities over the next several months. We anticipate submitting the Draft EA Report for review in the fall of 2018.
 

ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT BACKGROUND

What is a full individual Environmental Assessment (EA) process?

The proposed changes to the SCRF are subject to an Environmental Assessment (EA) under the Ontario EA Act. The EA process is the most rigorous and thorough process available in Ontario. An EA is a study that assesses the potential environmental effects (positive or negative) of a proposal. Key components of an EA include consultation with government agencies and the public; consideration and evaluation of alternatives; and the management of potential environmental effects. Conducting an environmental assessment promotes good environmental planning before decisions are made about proceeding with a proposal. To learn more about the Environmental Assessment Process, you can also visit the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks' website.

How long will this EA process take?

Terrapure anticipates between 15 to 18 months of technical work and consultation before we submit the proposed EA to the Ministry for review followed by approximately 8 to 9 months of ministerial review (30 weeks legislated) before a final decision. Realistically, we expect a final decision in mid-to-late 2019.

Will Terrapure consult the community throughout the EA process?

Yes! There will be many opportunities for public input during the Environmental Assessment phase including three open houses (with an online open house option). We encourage the community to participate, provide input on key aspects of the project, and ask questions to our project team. As with the Terms of Reference, we will also share information and seek feedback beyond the open houses. We encourage our neighbours and stakeholders to get in contact with our Project Team throughout the EA process with any questions they may have.

What is the Evaluation Criteria and Indicators?

As part of the EA, we will consider the potential effects on the natural environment and the community surrounding the Stoney Creek Regional Facility. The list of criteria was applied to each of the six options to evaluate if there is any potential impact (positive or negative). The community had the opportunity to review the evaluation criteria and provide from their perspective what additional criteria should be considered.

Who is conducting the Environmental Assessment Technical Studies?

GHD will continue to complete the majority of the work during the Technical Studies. GHD is a leading professional services company with extensive expertise in all aspects of the Stoney Creek Regional Facility.

How can the community be assured that the studies are being completed fairly, accurately, and transparently?

There are multiple independent checks and balances throughout the EA process. These include:

  • Consultants are bound by professional codes of conduct and ethics and will complete objective and unbiased work
  • Dr. Kerry Rowe, a world-renowned waste facility expert, has been retained to conduct an independent third party review of certain aspects of the EA and is bound by his own professional code of practice and reputation
  • A Government Review Team (GRT) made up of professionals from provincial, regional, and municipal agencies individually review and provide input that Terrapure will address before the EA is submitted to the Minister
  • The Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change is the final reviewer and decision maker of the proposed undertaking submitted. The Ontario EA process is a rigorous process that requires a high level of independent, unbiased work and review.

What is Terrapure Proposing to do?

We are responding to growing demands from our local customers, particularly those in Hamilton. Industries such as steel-making and infrastructure developments like the McMaster Children’s Hospital expansion and the new James Street GO Station rely on us to provide a safe, environmentally sound facility to support the growth of the local economy. Fifty percent of the material received annually comes from customers in the City of Hamilton. If it had to go to another facility farther away, it would add significant cost and environmental impact from increased transportation. The proposed site reconfiguration would allow Terrapure to continue to provide a significant economic contribution to the local community, with well-paying jobs and over $14 million in additional funding to community groups and local infrastructure projects in Stoney Creek.

Why is Terrapure proposing to increase the capacity of the SCRF?

We’ve put together two videos that explain how we operate the SCRF. Terrapure’s compliance record at the SCRF is exemplary. We operate in compliance with or exceeding regulatory requirements. The highly engineered site ensures maximum environmental protection through a double-liner system. It is constructed with two levels of natural clay liner and a single geosynthetic membrane liner along with extensive leachate and groundwater collection systems. The liner is approximately 10 feet thick and ensures nothing is able to escape to the natural environment. The design has been called “state of the art” by an independent panel of experts. We have been in operation for 20 years, with more and more neighbours and residential development building up around us, and we have never had an incident affecting health or the environment. In fact, Hamilton Public Health has reviewed all of the extensive health and environmental monitoring data accumulated over 20 years in existence and confirmed there is nothing that poses a risk to the community.

How did Terrapure arrive at the additional amount of residual material being applied for?

Terrapure identified a realistic amount of additional residual volume required to meet the needs of local customers from the City of Hamilton and surrounding area over a timeframe that makes logical business sense.

Why doesn’t Terrapure look at a different location for receiving the additional waste?

Terrapure considered finding an alternative site for a new facility and determined it not to be feasible. Given that 50% of the material accepted at the SCRF comes from local industry in Hamilton, a new site would need to be located in Hamilton. The proposed changes prevent the need to site a new landfill in Hamilton.

Who ultimately decides whether the proposed changes can proceed or not?

The Minister of the Environment and Climate Change is responsible under the EA Act for approval of the proposed capacity increase of the SCRF.

Is the Community Liaison Committee being consulted on the proposed changes? If so, how?

Yes. Terrapure is engaging with members of the Community Liaison Committee (“CLC”) as a key stakeholder during the EA process, similar to all interested stakeholders. In addition to special informational workshops or meetings requested by the CLC to specifically discuss the proposed EA project, all CLC members are invited to attend all public related events throughout the EA process (e.g., Public Open Houses). The committee is comprised of citizen members from the local community surrounding the facility, representatives of Terrapure, the City of Hamilton and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change.

Is the City of Hamilton being consulted on the proposed changes? If so, then how?

Yes. Terrapure is consulting directly with the City of Hamilton throughout the EA process, both with politicians and City staff.

What is the Government Review Team and their role in the EA process?

The Government Review Team (GRT) consists of staff from government ministries and agencies (federal, provincial, including local Conservation Authorities; and, municipal, including local Boards of Health) who contribute to the review of EA documentation (Terms of Reference and EA) by providing comments from their mandated areas of responsibility.

How do the proposed changes align with the new provincial Waste Free Ontario & Circular Economy Act?

Terrapure’s proposal aligns perfectly with the government’s direction on continuing to require permitted, well-designed, environmentally-secure landfills to manage residual materials. The relatively short lifespan will provide an important bridge as the government and society work towards the vision of a zero-waste economy.

 

TERRAPURE & THE STONEY CREEK REGIONAL FACILITY

Who is Terrapure?

Terrapure Environmental (Terrapure) is a leading Canadian provider of innovative, cost-effective environmental services and recycling solutions that help address industry’s most complex environmental challenges. With an unwavering focus on environmental, health and safety excellence, the company provides services that minimize waste and maximize the recovery or recycling of valuable industrial by-products through a coast-to-coast facility network and on customer sites.

Where is the Stoney Creek Regional Facility?

The Terrapure Stoney Creek Regional Facility (SCRF) is located at the northwest corner of Mud Street and Upper Centennial Parkway (Highway 20) in the community of upper Stoney Creek and has been part of the local community since it was approved by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation, and Parks (MECP) in 1996.

What is the SCRF?

The SCRF is unique in Ontario in that it only takes in non-hazardous residual excavation materials and by-products from industries, such as local steel production. The highly engineered site ensures maximum environmental protection and has been called “state of the art” by an independent panel of experts. The SCRF operates Monday to Friday, from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and is regulated by the MECP.

Does the SCRF smell?

The SCRF does not take in garbage so there are no garbage-related odours.

What type of material does the SCRF take in?

The SCRF is only permitted to receive non-hazardous residual materials from industrial operations like the local steel producers and infrastructure projects like the new James Street GO station and the McMaster Children’s Hospital expansion.

Where does the material come from?

Approximately 50 percent of the material received annually at the SCRF comes from customers in the City of Hamilton, so the site plays a vital role supporting local industry and the economy.

How does the SCRF contribute to the local community?

Terrapure has an exemplary track record of operating the SCRF and enjoys strong relationships with its neighbours and the City of Hamilton. Terrapure has provided over $22 million to the City of Hamilton and the Heritage Green Community Trust over the history of the SCRF. Terrapure looks forward to continuing to provide funding for local community groups and maintaining these great relationships while increasing our investments in the health and well-being of the community.

How does the SCRF support local industry and the local economy?

The SCRF plays a critical role in supporting local industry and the local economy with a conveniently located, environmentally sound facility for non-recyclable industrial residual material.

How is the environment protected?

We’ve put together two videos that explain how we operate the SCRF. Terrapure’s compliance record at the SCRF is exemplary. We operate in compliance with or exceeding regulatory requirements. The highly engineered site ensures maximum environmental protection through a double-liner system. It is constructed with two levels of natural clay liner and a single geosynthetic membrane liner along with extensive leachate and groundwater collection systems. The liner is approximately 10 feet thick and ensures nothing is able to escape to the natural environment. The design has been called “state of the art” by an independent panel of experts. We have been in operation for 20 years, with more and more neighbours and residential development building up around us, and we have never had an incident affecting health or the environment. In fact, Hamilton Public Health has reviewed all of the extensive health and environmental monitoring data accumulated over 20 years in existence and confirmed there is nothing that poses a risk to the community.

What are the Heritage Green Trust and the City of Hamilton Royalty Program?

Terrapure maintains two major community investment programs related to the SCRF – the Heritage Green Community Trust and a City of Hamilton Royalty Program. One dollar for every tonne of material received at the site each year goes into each initiative, which support community charitable and infrastructure programs. Over the nearly 20 years that these programs have been in place, they have injected a combined total of more than $22 million into the local community.

 

Download a PDF of these FAQ here.