Amendments to Ontario Regulation 253/06 made under the Environmental Assessment Act and Ontario Regulation 254/06 made under the Environmental Protection Act, to extend the application of the two regulations provisions by one year for Plasco Trail Road Inc.'s plasma gasification demonstration project.
Bill or Act:
Environmental Assessment Act, R.S.O. 1990 and Environmental Protection Act, R.S.O. 1990
Summary of Decision:
Regulatory amendments to O. Reg. 253/06 and O. Reg. 254/06 were filed and came into effect on January 21, 2010. The changes extend the designation and exemption for the demonstration project under the Environmental Assessment Act by one year, beginning on the date that the amending regulations came into force. Also, the changes extend the provisions under the Environmental Protection Act to allow Plasco to receive and process waste at its demonstration facility for another year, beginning on the date that the amending regulations came into force.
February 5, 2010
Summary of Proposal:
O. Reg. 253/06 and O. Reg. 254/06 were created to set out the environmental approval requirements for the establishment and operation of Plasco’s demonstration facility. The regulations provided a two year timeframe for the demonstration project in order to test the design and merits of Plasco’s new technology and to confirm whether municipal waste could be gasified to create a fuel source and generate electricity without adversely affecting the environment.
After O. Reg. 253/06 and O. Reg. 254/06 were made, Plasco built and began operating a plasma arc demonstration project at the closed Nepean Landfill in the City of Ottawa. Please refer to the end of this document for a link to a map of the demonstration facility. [insert link]. The regulations allow Plasco to gasify up to 85 tonnes per day of municipal waste (not including materials that have been source-separated for the purposes of recycling) to produce 5.2 megawatts (MW) per day of electricity. Of the 85 tonnes, up to 10 tonnes per day can consist of high carbon waste, which includes plastic bags, non-recyclable plastics and shredded tires.
On January 21, 2010, the amendments to O. Reg. 253/06 and O. Reg. 254/06 were filed.
Amendment to O. Reg. 253/06 under the Environmental Assessment Act (O. Reg. 10/10)
O. Reg. 253/06 designates the demonstration project as subject to, and exempts it from, the requirements of the Environmental Assessment Act subject to certain conditions. For example, the conditions limit the amount and type of waste to be processed which ensures that the environment is protected during the operation of the demonstration project. The conditions also limited the demonstration project to a two-year period, which expired on January 24, 2010.
The amending regulation extends the designation and exemption for the demonstration project under the Environmental Assessment Act by one year, beginning on the date that the amending regulation comes into force.
Amendments to O. Reg. 254/06 under the Environmental Protection Act (O. Reg. 11/10)
O. Reg. 254/06 exempts the demonstration project from the hearing requirements under the Environmental Protection Act and imposes a number of site specific requirements, including among others, air emission limits, monitoring protocols, third party inspections, cease air emission procedures, and mandatory consultation sessions. The regulation also prohibited Plasco from receiving or processing waste after two years from the date that the demonstration facility first receives waste (this time period expired on January 24, 2010).
The amending regulation changed this provision to allow Plasco to receive and process waste at its demonstration facility for another year, beginning on the date that the amending regulation comes into force. The exemption from hearing requirements and the site specific requirements remain in place.
Program Support Coordinator
Ministry of the Environment
Environmental Assessment and Approvals Branch
2 St. Clair Avenue West
Phone: (416) 314-8287
Fax: (416) 314-6810
January 21, 2010