The fight over whether Toronto should be shipping its garbage to Michigan has given new hope to proponents of the once-rejected Adams Mine in Northern Ontario. They still see the abandoned mine as a perfect destination for refuse from the Toronto area.
Scott Roberts, vice-president of public affairs at CN Rail, said his company is watching as interests in Michigan and along Highway 401 complain about the impact of Toronto's garbage on their communities.
In particular, Mr. Roberts said he and Keith Heller, CP Rail's senior vice-president for Eastern Canada, recently had discussed the future of the Adams Mine with Gordon McGuinty, president of Notre Development Corp.
Mr. McGuinty has been the main proponent of using the mine near Kirkland Lake as a dump. Notre Development and CN Rail were among the members of Rail Cycle North, the consortium that had taken the proposal to Toronto City Council. Two years ago, Toronto rejected the proposal to ship the garbage 600 kilometres north, opting to send it to Michigan.
"We just wanted to kind of touch base and see where things are at and whether or not this [the Michigan protests]does mean anything for the Adams Mine," Mr. Roberts said in an interview.
"This thing has an awful long way to go, and one never knows what Toronto Council will do with it. We all just kind of have to wait and see what turn this thing takes next."
CN Rail is negotiating to buy Ontario Northland Railway, but Mr. Roberts stressed that such a purchase would not be linked to using the Adams Mine as a site for Toronto's garbage.
At Notre Development, the vice-president, Elizabeth Fournier, confirmed that Mr. McGuinty had dinner with the representatives of CN Rail last week to discuss the future of the Adams Mine.
"CN and Mr. McGuinty have been partners in the consortium for over 15 years. . . . It would just be a logical move for them to have dinner together," she said.