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Crematorium’s plans conflict with neighbours’ right to clean air?

Holly Levalliant

By Holly LeValliant

Crematoriums, according to a new regulation, are not supposed to be built closer than 300 metres away from residential areas. But in Moore Park, in the GTA, the crematorium was built only 16.5 metres away from the neighbourhood.

“When I go outside and sniff, I wonder ‘Is this human remains or animal remains,’ according to a resident interviewed by the Toronto Star.

The crematorium applied to the Ministry of the Environment, and was granted the right to build new cremators that will allow for more frequent burns. The crematorium argues that the emissions produced by the cremators will be reduced and regardless, they do not need to follow the new regulations as their original facility was built prior to the regulations.

The local councillor has launched an appeal of the ministry’s decision, arguing that the new cremators should be subject to the new regulations. The purpose of the regulations, according to the councillor, is to protect public health. Dr. Perry Kendall, B.C.’s chief medical health officer, warns that emissions from crematoriums pose potential health risks. Cremation, according to Kendall, could cause the release of contaminants, including mercury, cadmium, and lead.

As cremation becomes a more popular choice, the issue of emissions from crematoriums is likely to grow.

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