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Newsroom:

Ontario ranked as fifth-largest air polluter in North America
July 20, 2001

Six Ontario companies ranked in the top 50 polluters in North America

The North American Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) report "Taking Stock - North American Pollutant Releases and Transfers 1998" released today concluded:

The annual report tracks the sources and handling of industrial pollutants in North America in each province and state and is broken down by individual company. Using data from Canada's National Pollutant Release Inventory (NPRI) and the US Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) the report tracks the on- and off-site transfer and release of 165 toxic substances.

Anne Mitchell, Executive Director of the Canadian Institute for Environmental Law and Policy (CIELAP) stated, "This report shows that Ontario, while improving in the total generation of pollutants and on site releases, certainly could do better in the areas of air releases and off-site releases."

"This years report raises some real concerns about what happens to waste that is being transferred off-site. We know that some of this material is being recycled, but we don't know how the remainder is being disposed of," stated Mitchell. "Obviously more work needs to be done to properly track these pollutants."

Other findings in the report include: Over the years these reports are becoming more comprehensive. "This report is particularly encouraging in that power generating facilities, a major pollution source (contributing 7% of all Canadian releases and transfers reported) have been added as well as transfers to recycling. This allows us to have a better handle on the total pollution being released, said Mitchell".

Ms. Mitchell concluded, "This report allows the public to learn what hazardous materials are being produced and released into their local environment and helps to hold individual companies and governments accountable for the dangerous materials produced."

For more information about local sources of industrial pollutants or individual companies go to:
www.pollutionwatch.org

To read the full Taking Stock report or to search the data, visit the CEC website at:
www.cec.org/takingstock/

For more information contact:
Anne Mitchell, Executive Director
(416)-923-3529


The Canadian Institute for Environmental Law and Policy has for been commenting on and monitoring policy and regulatory changes related to the environment for 30 years.