End-of-life vehicles in remote Canadian locations

ARC funded the development of a document aimed at helping remote communities deal with end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) that can accumulate there. While the Canadian Automotive Recyclers Environmental Code (CAREC) is a valuable resource for auto recyclers, regulators and interested stakeholders to responsibly retire ELVs, CAREC works well in urban and rural areas where ELVs have a positive value. Unfortunately, ELVs can accumulate in remote communities because the cost of recycling often exceeds the value of the parts and materials.

The document acts as a primer for discussions on effective recycling of remote ELVs.

A National Approach to the Environmental Management of End-of-life Vehicles in Canada

ARC believes that a national approach to managing ELVs is both timely and necessary. As various levels of government consider ELVs in the context of waste management policy initiatives, it is vitally important that initiatives address the unique characteristics of the existing ELV recycling marketplace. An outcomes-based approach to waste management leads in one direction: the implementation of common decommissioning standard for ELV processors. Applied across the country a national approach will result in a consistent, effective and efficient end-of-life vehicle management program in Canada.

EPR regulations for Ozone Depleting Substances

Environment Canada is developing draft regulations to manage the end-of-life of ozone depleting substances (ODSs) and their halocarbon alternatives (HFCs and PFCs). In general, the ARC indicated its support for the general concept of extended producer responsibility for ODSs. It indicated that ARC members subscribe to an approach to end-of-life vehicle (ELV) management that both maximizes their economic value through and recovery of reusable and recyclable parts and materials and minimizes the environmental burdens of ELV management through recovery of substances of concern.

Mercury Switch Removal

Mercury emissions from the environment are transformed through biological processes to methylmercury, a persistent substance which bio-accumulates in the food chain and is particularly toxic to humans and wildlife. A significant source of mercury has been placed in motor vehicles by the auto manufacturers as mercury switches for convenience lighting. This practice finally ceased in 2003. A substantial number of vehicles on the roads for the next 10 to 15 years will contain these switches. When these vehicles are crushed and shredded by the scrap metal industry for metals recovery, the mercury is released into the environment.

ARC supports the removal of mercury switches from vehicles via the Switch Out Program, co-ordinated by the Summerhill Impact on behalf of the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers Association (CVMA) and the Canadian Steel Producers Association (CSPA). Further information can be reviewed at:

ARC also supports the mercury-free scrap buying policies of the CSPA and its Members –

Non-Deployed OEM Airbags

The re-use of non-deployed OEM airbags is an economical and safe alternative to new OEM airbags when airbags need replacing after an accident when proper care is taken to remove, store, catalogue, ship, and install an airbag. The Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) has endorsed Guidelines to safely re-use “recycled” OEM airbags. ARC supports the CCMTA Guidelines and is in the process of educating recyclers, insurers and collision repairers regarding the content and implementation of those Guidelines.

ARA and ARC Co-operation Agreement

Edmonton, AB – The Automotive Recyclers of Canada (ARC) and the Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA) signed a Co-operation Agreement that lays the foundation for the two associations to work closer together on issues of joint concern, whether they are local or global issues. The agreement formalizes a relationship that had been developing over the last few years.