February 28, 2020
The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) welcomed the announcement by the Ontario Government and Minister Yurek to transition management and oversight of battery recycling throughout the province to industry, fulfilling the mandate of the Resource Recovery and Circular Economy Act of 2016.
Under this new recycling model, manufacturers will have full operational and financial responsibility for battery recovery in Ontario. "Ceding operational control to producers is sensible as it enables the parties most familiar with the products and their end-of-life options to devise the most efficient, cost-effective system," said Philip Squair, NEMA Vice President, Government Relations. "This new regulation is an important step in modernizing battery recycling requirements in the Province."
According to Squair, NEMA Dry Battery Section Members have consistently identified Ontario as the most expensive battery recycling program in the world, which harms both consumers and manufacturers in the Province. "The transition to industry control will allow for more flexible, cost-effective methods to achieve peak environmental outcomes and reduce red tape," Squair said.
Unlike the current battery recycling program, the new regulation will not incentivize the shipment of depleted American batteries into the Province, so Ontario consumers will no longer be responsible for paying for the waste they did not create.
"By moving from a costly and inefficient program to a competitive landscape with progressively increasing recycling targets, the industry can better apply existing national systems and more capably help to manage their products at end-of-life," added Squair.