Statement from Gemma Zecchini, CEO of Stewardship Ontario

TORONTO, July 27 /CNW/ - "I want to thank Environmental Commissioner Gord Miller for today's thought-provoking report.

Stewardship Ontario is committed to playing its role in enhancing Ontario's environment and any advice or support, particularly from someone with Mr. Miller's background and expertise, will be taken very seriously.

Over the next few weeks, we will be studying Mr. Miller's report, and consulting with our stakeholders, and will make any changes that will improve our organization, our program and Ontario's natural environment."

    About Stewardship Ontario:

Stewardship Ontario is an independent, industry-funded and managed organization mandated under the Waste Diversion Act. The organization reports to a board of directors made up of representatives from the retail and consumer products industry.

Stewardship Ontario operates two waste diversion programs in Ontario - the Blue Box program, which provides municipalities with funding to support the residential recycling of paper and packaging; and the Orange Drop program, targeting the collection and recovery of hazardous and special waste materials through municipal depots and special drop-off events.

In 2009 alone, Stewardship Ontario transferred over $100 million in steward fees to municipalities to offset the costs of recycling; these funds drive waste diversion innovation and help create more sustainable communities.

All Ontarians can be proud of our results when it comes to waste diversion and recycling. The recycling rate for paper and packaging has increased from 46% in 2003 to 66% in 2008. Last year, the Orange Drop program diverted over 18 million kilograms of waste from landfills and waterways and is on target to divert some 27 million kilograms under the extended program launched July 1.

SOURCE Stewardship Ontario

For further information: For further information: Amanda Harper Sevonty, Director Marketing and Communications, Stewardship Ontario, Mobile: 647-248-6787, Email:

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