Remediating the hundreds of hectares of former industrial lands on Toronto's waterfront will improve environmental health and reduce urban sprawl.
Waterfront Toronto is studying the latest on-site soil-washing technologies as it seeks ways to turn the contaminated soil from a liability into a resource. In a field test, two contractors processed approximately 20,000 cubic metres of soil on site in less than three months.
The cost per tonne was comparable to the traditional dig-and-dump approach, which involves trucking contaminated soil to a landfill. Not only does recycling keep contaminated soil out of landfills, it virtually eliminates dump truck traffic between the site and the landfill. This reduces damage to roadsand to the environment.
- Finding a way to remediate two million cubic metres of soil contaminated by more than 150 years of industrial activity
- Finding environmentally and economically suitable ways to remediate contaminated soil on site, rather than removing it to landfills and trucking in clean fill
- Testing soil-washing, a practice not yet permitted under Ontario regulations
- Soil recycling is an affordable alternative to digging and dumping. Given its environmental and social benefits, governments should encourage it.
- Ontario environmental regulations should permit movement of contaminated soil in the waterfront area, and categorize recycled soil as safe rather than waste.
- On-site evaluations of similar soil-washing technologies led to more accurate comparisons.
Partners and Collaborators
- Waterfront Toronto
- FCM's Green Municipal Fund
- City of Toronto
- Toronto Port Lands Authority
- Deme Environmental Contractors
- Tetra Tech Canada Construction
- The Cannington Group
- Ontario Centre for Environmental Technology Advancement (now known as the Bloom Centre for Sustainability)
- Toronto and Region Conservation Authority
Raffi Bedrosyan, Director
Port Lands and Civil Infrastructure
Toronto Waterfront Revitalization Corporation
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