Ontario municipalities 'haven't woken up' to recycling concrete and asphalt: study
Mississisauga, Oshawa and Peel Region are three of the province’s worst offenders, according to study
A new study commissioned by the Toronto and Area Road Builders Association (TARBA) finds that many Ontario municipalities are failing to recycle concrete and asphalt.
When roads and buildings are demolished, concrete and asphalt chunks taken from the site can be cleaned, crushed and used as a construction material called aggregate in new projects.
Instead, "the material is just building up in stockpiles on private property and sooner or later it's going to have to go to a landfill," Rob Bradford, TARBA's executive director, told Ontario Morning.
TARBA's study compiled a ranking of Ontario cities, with Toronto, Cambridge and Markham coming out on top.
All three are using more than 60 per cent of the maximum amount of recycled aggregates allowed by provincial standards in their projects.
Sitting at the bottom are Mississauga, Oshawa and Peel Region, which use less than 15 per cent of the amount of recycled materials allowed.
They "really haven't woken up to this at all," said Bradford.
Ottawa, Hamilton sit in the middle
Ottawa, Hamilton and Waterloo all sit closer to the middle of 20 cities that were ranked.
"It's absolutely 100 per cent as good as virgin material," said Bradford, adding that he believes there is a kind of "fear" associated with the unknown of using recycled materials.
Bradford said that municipalities could save money by using recycled aggregate.
"It costs money to process this material but it will never cost you more than new aggregate," he said.
It also saves contractors money on disposal costs.
Ontario's provincial standards for roads allow for a set amount of recycled material, but municipalities have discretion when it comes to how much recycled aggregate they use.
With files from Ontario Morning