Non-Emergency Air Pollution Concerns
The City's Toronto Building department provides demolition and construction permits to property owners. The new Dust Control by-law and dedicated Enforcement Unit can respond to problematic residential infill sites and have the power to stop work at the construction site and revoke their construction permit if dust is travelling off-site and impacting public or private properties.
The Dust Control by-law does not apply to municipal works projects, work occurring on commercial or industrial properties, and to large-scale construction projects like multi-residential buildings, subdivisions or mixed-use developments.
Toronto Building has a Complaint Policy, which commits to investigate and respond to all registered ‘non-emergency’ complaints within 30 days. ‘Non-emergency concerns’ may include certain air pollution issues such as:
- Hazardous materials coming from a demolished building
- Dust or air quality complaint on a construction project
Contact one of the City of Toronto’s Toronto Building District Inspection Offices:
Toronto and East York District: 416-338-0700
North York District: 416-395-7541
Etobicoke York District: 416-394-8055
Scarborough District: 416-396-7322
Be prepared to provide the following information to the local Toronto Building inspector:
- Address of the property
- Details of your concern
You can also visit the City's Toronto Building complaint webpage for more information.
Immediate Air Pollution Concerns
The Ontario Government has a duty to protect worker health, public health and the environment from harm. Depending on the nature of the immediate concern, there are different resources you can contact. If you believe there is an immediate risk to someone's life, call 9-1-1.
Air pollution or spill on the construction site
Contact the Ontario Ministry of Labour to report a potential construction site violation of worker health & safety and/or the lack of safe construction practices. Examples include unsafe work practices, construction methods and equipment; lack of protective breathing equipment used during dusty or polluting activities. There are occupational exposure limits for a number of air pollutants created on construction sites including silica dust, wood dust, asbestos which can be safely managed through a combination of control measures and personal safety equipment.
Contact Ontario's Health and Safety Contact Centre:
More information at https://www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/hs/topics/construction.php
Air pollution or spill off-site
Contact the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks' Spills Action Centre 24 hours a day to report a release of any kind (to air, water or land) that could be impacting the natural environment, public space or your own property.
Contact the Spills Action Centre:
Toll-free: 1-866-MOETIPS (663-8477)
Be prepared to provide the following information to an Environmental Officer:
- date and time of the incident
- source and/or location of the incident
- current status of the incident
- type of pollutant involved (if known)
- what impact the pollutant is having on the environment
- weather conditions
More information at https://www.ontario.ca/page/report-pollution-and-spills