The City-owned Highland Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant treats all of Scarborough's sewage and serves nearly 500,000 people. Unfortunately, it is one of the city’s largest polluters because the plant burns sewage in an old incinerator.
According to Toronto Public Health’s ChemTRAC data, the neighbourhood near the plant ranks 1st or 2nd in Toronto for many toxic substances including heavy metals. Click here to view TEA's local information flyer.
It doesn't have to be this way. Toronto's other sewage plant, Ashbridges Bay Treatment Plant, serves three times the number of people (2 million residents) and releases far less pollution into the air.
How is that possible?
Ashbridges Bay stopped burning sewage many years ago. They switched to 'beneficial use' options to manage their biosolids because local residents spoke up against pollution. Now, it is Scarborough's turn to demand safe solutions for managing our sewage. The Toronto Water department is doing an Environmental Assessment to decide on the future of the Highland Creek Treatment Plant and they are relying on your opinion. Scarborough does not need to continue burning sewage. We don't need to truck it all away either. There are innovative solutions being used in Toronto and around the world such as 'anaerobic digestion' that can reduce pollution, reduce trucking and find a sustainable on-site solution that generates renewable energy and natural fertilizer at the same time!