Volume 94, Issue 5


NEWS

Harris gives private U's thumbs up

Galleria welcomes 2,400 new jobs

UWOFA, admin wrap up a deal

Knife proposal seeks mandatory jail-time

Feds give prof $50,000 for stripper hunt

Ontario pollution hits all time high

U of T Bookstore hits the picket lines

Where have all the Christians gone?

Metropolitan

Ontario pollution hits all time high



By Wes Brown
Gazette Staff



Ontario stinks – literally.

A new report from the Ontario Ministry of Environment, has placed the province of Ontario on the podium along side some of this continent's worst polluters.

Ontario Ministry of the Environment administrator John Steeles, said the report shows the need for the continuation of tough environmental regulations to be imposed on industries throughout the province.

"Some of these companies just can't meet the regulations that the government is putting in place. Industries in Ontario spent over $1 billion last year to bring their plants up to meet the new standards – but it's still not enough," he said.

Steeles said some areas are better than others in the province, but added it is difficult to point fingers at who specifically is responsible for this latest dubious ranking for the province.

"Companies are compliant one year and then fall behind the next. There's no consistency," he said. "We will not be happy until [Ontario] has eliminated all air and water contaminants within the province."

Geri Reed, an environmental inspector at London's Ecotech Planners and Advisors Inc., said her business helps corporations when the Ministry tells them to clean up their acts.

Reed said she can not do her job because the Ministry does not have enough people to keep up with the growth of industry. "[The government] isn't going in and regulating them, so businesses are doing whatever they want. They're getting away with releasing illegal amounts of pollutants."

Cedric Breins, a Western professor of chemical and biochemical engineering, said companies are more willing to take a risk and pay the fine, than they are to invest in revamping their entire production to meet environmental standards.

"Reports like this are good because people will complain and put pressure on the government to do something. In the end, I think the solution is for the Ministry to run more checks on industry."

He added technologically, Ontario has the capability to clean up the pollutants currently being released in North America, but it all comes down to cost. "It's a social problem more then anything else," he said.


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