Management of Landfills

Res #: 20-09M
Number: 20
Year: 2009
Midterm: Yes
Expired: Yes
Responses Received: No
Departments: Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment

WHEREAS a review of waste disposal site regulations is underway;


WHEREAS compacted and backfilled landfill sites provide many cavities in the crushed waste material which is then covered with dirt thus providing a prime home and breeding ground for the Norway rat;


WHEREAS through the resulting increase in habitat and readily available food supply at backfilled landfill sites and the resulting increase in numbers of the Norway rats at these locations there is an increased health hazard from diseases; and


WHEREAS any landfill site developed under the current regulations causes environmental concerns now and into the future which will likely have to be addressed at great cost by municipalities in the future;


BE IT RESOLVED that those involved in the current review into landfill regulations recognize the failure of the current regulations and allow municipalities the right to determine how they manage ‘nuisance grounds’ in their individual jurisdictions.

Response from Honourable Nancy Heppner, Minister of Environment:

The Environmental Management and Protection Act, 2002, The Municipal Refuse Management Regulations, and The Clean Air Act and Regulations set minimum requirements for landfill construction and operation. These minimum requirements are established through permit conditions and are based on commonly accepted landfill practices in North America. Burning of mixed wastes is prohibited due to the creation of toxic fumes, precursors for acid rain and carcinogenic air pollutants.

When performed correctly, cover and compaction should eliminate void spaces and potential harbourage for vermin such as the Norway rat. The ministry recommends that control of vermin such as the Norway rat be carried out with the assistance of pest control professionals.

The ministry will continue to consider improvements to the legislation to ensure the protection of the environment.