Robert C. McLeod: Waste Resource Management Strategy

Ministers' Statements and Speeches

Yellowknife — August 15, 2019

Mr. Speaker, the Government of the Northwest Territories made a mandate commitment to develop a strategy for improving the way that waste is managed in the Northwest Territories.

Waste management is a shared responsibility, and improving waste management in the NWT requires a collaborative approach that considers the diverse interests of all groups producing and managing waste.

After extensive engagement, I am pleased to share that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, together with the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs, has completed and released the NWT Waste Resource Management Strategy and Implementation Plan – a 10-year roadmap to reducing and managing waste in the NWT.

Mr. Speaker, the NWT Waste Resource Management Strategy and Implementation Plan reaffirms the GNWT’s commitment to working with our community and private-sector partners to manage the resources and potential economic and environmental benefits from household, commercial and industrial waste, both from the private sector and our municipalities

The Strategy and Implementation Plan has four overarching goals:

  1. Preventing and reducing waste at the source;
  2. Diverting waste from disposal;
  3. Improving waste management facilities and practices; and,
  4. Leading by example, through initiatives that help us to ‘green our government’.

These goals are intended to foster a shift away from the current disposal model approach to waste management, to one that will reduce the amount of waste from residential and non-residential sources that is sent to landfills. This shift aims to disrupt the current model of making, using and disposing of resources in order to better protect our environment and reduce the amount of waste that is sent to NWT landfills. 

Mr. Speaker, by focusing on improving waste management practices and policies, the Strategy will ultimately help communities in the NWT reduce the long-term liabilities and costs associated with hazardous waste and shortened landfill life, and contribute to the green economy by creating opportunities for new businesses and jobs to emerge in the waste management sector.

The Waste Resource Management Strategy and Implementation Plan was developed based on extensive public engagement. I want to thank our residents and the many Indigenous and community governments, regulatory boards, federal agencies, professional associations, non-government organizations, businesses, industry and commercial operators for helping to shape this 10-year roadmap toward improved waste management in the NWT.

This strategy will help us to reduce waste and support a healthy environment for generations to come.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.