Disposal of Asbestos and Demolition Debris
Whereas the number of old, abandoned, derelict houses and buildings are ever increasing and becoming the responsibility of the Municipality to dispose of in order to restore the safety of the area; and
Whereas these properties with the derelict buildings create a dangerous situation to the municipality as well as it becomes unsightly, a nuisance and a breeding ground for pests. Most of these structures are unsafe for entry by the time that a Municipality gains title to the property through Tax Enforcement Proceedings; and
Whereas the cost of demotion and disposal of materials is extremely high even with simple, straightforward demotion projects due to the high costs of transportation to a approved waste disposal site; and
Whereas older derelict buildings often contain hazardous materials, particularly asbestos, which requires specialized mediation and disposal under current provincial environmental regulations; and
Whereas municipalities had no say in either the allowance of asbestos and other hazardous materials in construction, or in the environmental regulations that control proper disposal; and
Whereas the Municipal Revenue Sharing funding formula was developed to address provincial interests in municipal daily operations, and not additional, unexpected expenses;
Therefore be it resolved that SUMA advocate the provincial government to create a separate fund, outside of, and not drawing from, Municipal Revenue Sharing that municipalities can access to assist in the disposal of demolition materials, including asbestos, from derelict buildings.
ACTS AFFECTED: None
REGION/SECTOR AFFECTED: All
Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association Unit 305 - 4741Parliament Avenue
REGINA SK S4W 0T9
June 14, 2022
Dear Randy Goulden:
Thank you for your letter regarding the resolutions passed at the 2022 Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA) annual convention. I am pleased to offer the following responses:
2022-010. Disposal of Asbestos and Demolition Debris Asbestos:
Asbestos is a hazardous material that must be handled and disposed of properly. Most landfills in Saskatchewan are permitted to accept asbestos, if the appropriate handling procedures are followed. Asbestos materials must be double-bagged in 6 mil bags or other appropriate containment and materials must be buried in the landfill the same day they are received.
Arrangements should be made with a landfill prior to disposal.
More information on how to dispose of asbestos can be found in the Policy on the Disposal of Friable Waste Asbestos guidance document on saskatchewan.ca.
Currently, there is no funding available for the removal and disposal of asbestos. However, the home renovation tax credit offers reimbursement for asbestos removal. More information can be found at https://www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/taxes-and-investments/tax-credits/home renovation-tax-credit#eligible-expenses.
The ministry recognizes that derelict buildings can be expensive to demolish and dispose of and encourages communities to work together on waste management options. Some communities have constructed inert landfills to assist in the disposal of construction and demolition waste.
Although an inert landfill may have less stringent construction and operating requirements and lower associated costs than a typical municipal landfill, approval is still required. Inert landfills need to be constructed as per site conditions and applicable best management practices. The ministry is in the process of developing a guidance document for the construction and operation of inert landfills to assist stakeholder development of alternative options to municipal waste landfills for construction and demolition waste.
Currently, there is no funding available for the removal and disposal of derelict buildings.
I appreciate the opportunity to respond to your resolutions and look forward to working with SUMA to achieve our common goals.
Dana Skoropad, MInister of Environment
cc: Honourable Jeremy Cockrill, Minister of Highways
Honourable Jim Reiter, Minister of Energy and Resources
Mark Mcloughlin, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Environment