The Ontario MInistry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) recently announced the closing the Municipal Hazardous or Special Waste (MHSW) program now that the Batteries and Hazardous and Special Products regulations are in place to manage hazardous wastes in Ontario. All steps related to winding up the old program have been implemented and Stewardship Ontario has prepared and submitted a final report to the Minister.

Minister’s Notice of Termination

The MHSW program ceased operations on September 30, 2021. The program undertook administrative wind up activities between October 2021 and June 2022. On June 8, 2023, Stewardship Ontario, the industry funding organization that operated the MHSW program, submitted its final report to the minister and the Resourced Productivity and Recovery Authority (RPRA). This report demonstrates that all steps in the wind up plan that was approved by RPRA have been implemented.

The materials collected and managed under the MHSW program or separate industry stewardship plans have been transitioned to Ontario’s producer responsibility framework under the Resource Recovery and Circular Economy Act, 2016. Single-use batteries have been included in the program under the Batteries Regulation since July 1, 2020, and requirements for the other MHSW materials started on October 1, 2021, as set out in the Hazardous and Special Products Regulation.

During the MHSW program’s 13 years of operation, 235,000 tonnes of material were collected and recycled or properly disposed. This is in addition to about 120,000 tonnes of material that was also collected through separate approved industry stewardship plans for materials such as paints, solvents, pesticides, fertilizers, oil containers, oil filters, antifreeze, pressurized containers, and single-use batteries.