LANSING (WWJ) – A group of U.S. lawmakers is telling Canada: We like your people, but we don’t want your trash.

It’s about economics. That’s according to Macomb County Commissioner Fred Miller, who says Canadian trash haulers have no disincentive for bringing Canadian waste into Michigan.

“We love our Canadian friends. They’re great neighbors and we cooperate on so many issues. But, on this issue we have to be firm and say, ‘Please keep your trash in Canada’,” he said, Wednesday.

Commissioner Miller said the current five dollar-per truck border crossing fee isn’t much help.

“The trash flows into Michigan because, in many ways, we’re a cheap date.  It’s easy for people to bring their trash here  because it’s cheaper. There’s an economic incentive,” he said.

Under the proposed “Stop Canadian Trash Act,” the fee would jump to $500 per commercial truck, and help boost inspections. 

“We really still don’t know what is in those trucks, many times, when they come over,” said Wayne County Executive Bob Ficano.

Ficano said inspections are currently only done on one percent of Canadian trash trucks, and new inspection fee would help to  increase security and safety at the border crossing.

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow introduced the legislation.

Back in January, she and fellow Michigan Senator Carl Levin helped foster an agreement that stopped municipal waste shipments to Michigan. But the city shipments that were halted represent only 40 percent of the trash entering the state from Canada. Waste from private companies continues to come in. (More on this story).

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Comments (3)
  1. Clark Anderson says:

    A WASTE OF TIME. This shows you how ridiculous our lawmakers are by spending their time, at our cost, to fight this pointless and worthless battle. There is nothing different from Canadian trash than from American trash. Why do people care? Because they are fools. Why aren’t they complaining about the American trash that goes to American landfills? If you cut off the Canadian trash, it doesn’t do anything different for the environment — the trash still comes! The only thing this legislation does is HURT THE US ECONOMY. In times like these, I can’t believe politicians are FIGHTING US BUSINESS.

  2. Mom2boys says:

    There’s not enough monetary gain by allowing Canadian trash here to make it the deciding factor! Look at the size of Canada, and then the size of the US. With that size they have to bring their trash here? Of course not! Keep your landfill pollution on your side of the border, please. We have enough of our own.

  3. Clark Anderson says:

    Your reasoning makes no sense — just because Canada is a large country (in reference to land area), it has nothing to do with trash creation or flow. That is like saying, “Because the USA has a larger Latino population than Canada, Canada should stop sending their trash here”.

    You prove my point though — only fools ride this political train. This Canadian trash doesn’t affect you in any way — including pollution. The US regulates trash storage better than any nation on earth. Regardless, THE SAME AMOUNT OF TRASH WILL FLOW INTO THE SAME LANDFILLS. It does NOTHING to fight “pollution” entering the landfills…

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