Keep your trash.
That was the blunt message that Ted Comiskey, the mayor of Ingersoll, delivered to Toronto Tuesday.
"My town, my residents, my neighbours do not want your garbage in our backyard. We are not a willing host," Comiskey told councillors at Toronto city hall. "We have never heard from anyone from the city of Toronto about the fact that you want to turn our backyard into a landfill."
Comiskey criticized city council for proposing that an old limestone quarry located about 800 metres from a subdivision in Ingersoll be turned into a dumping ground for Toronto's waste.
The project still needs an environmental assessment and provincial approval but it didn't stop Comiskey from going on the offensive.
"If you want to put your garbage in an old quarry I suggest you use the one on the corner of Christie and Bloor," the mayor said, "If memory serves me, during the last labour dispute, it was used as a temporary landfill. Why not make it permanent?"
Comiskey joked that his proposal was preposterous, asking, "Don't the same reasons apply for not putting a dump in Mayor Comiskey's backyard?"
Jaye Robinson, chair of the Public Works & Infrastructure Committee, agreed with Comiskey.
"He was loud and clear. He doesn't want Toronto's garbage and I can't say I blame him," Robinson told CBC News.
Eventually, the city of Toronto wants to divert 70 per cent of its waste from landfill. And while homeowners are nearly there, coming in at about 68 per cent, the city has so far managed to divert only 29 per cent of the waste apartment dwellers generate.
Emily Alfred of the Toronto Environmental Alliance feels the city could be doing a better job.
"If we recycled and composted and diverted everything we could we would only have about 15 percent left," she said. "That would extend our landfill by a number of years."
But, Comiskey and his community may not have to deal with Toronto's trash right away.
There's a little more room at the Toronto-owned Green Lane landfill near London, according to the city's Deputy Manager of Solid Waste, Rob Orpin.
"We had anticipated a 2029 closure for Green Lane, but a report out today now says 2040, so we have 24 more years of additional capacity," Orpin said.
Last week, filmmaker Michael Moore implicated Toronto in Michigan's environmental woes, claiming that the city's garbage was ending up in the state's landfills.