Site 41 and Beyond


Project Background

Canadian Landfill Sites and Water Quality: An Introduction

According to a 2010 United Nations Environmental Programme Study, landfill sites in both the developed and developing world are at a critical point. Very soon, if nothing is done to close them down, landfill sites could permanently pollute and damage waterways, land and sensitive ecosystems around the world.

This view is echoed by Environment Canada, which ranks Canada among the highest producers of solid waste per capita in all of the industrialized world. Although Canada is viewed as a country of abundant fresh water resources, in reality we are facing a mounting threat as a result of leaching dangerous contaminates into our land and our water supply - primarily through landfill sites.

It is estimated that tens of thousands of landfill sites are located all across Canada, which can seriously negatively impact water quality, plant-life, wildlife and their habitat, and surrounding lands and beyond. In Ontario alone, there are over 2,400 landfill sites, 40 of which are situated over the Alliston Aquifer - where Site 41 was to be added as the next landfill.

A Brief History of Site 41

In 1979 North Simcoe County municipalities started a search for a new place to dump their garbage. Site 41, a 20.7-hectare parcel of land was selected. Site 41 is directly above the Alliston Aquifer, an underground body of organic rock formations that naturally purifies vast underground water masses.

In 2006, the Ontario Ministry of the Environment issued final approval for the building of a landfill at Site 41. Resistance soon emerged through local residents, which included farmers, First Nation peoples, local businesses, and landowners. In the spring of 2009 construction began, precipitating a ‘Walk for Water’, attracting 600 people and the Anishinabe Kweag, the women of Beausoleil First Nation, who set up a protest camp opposite Site 41. Simcoe County obtained an interim court injunction against the blockade and over a dozen people were arrested for trespass and mischief. Site 41 became a rallying cry across Canada and internationally- for the protection of clean fresh water.

With national and international media exposure and mounting local, national and international pressure and support, Simcoe County councillors voted in favour of a one-year moratorium on construction in August 2009, and eventually agreed to discontinue the construction and development of Site 41.

This is truly an amazing story of hope and celebration, one of the very few in Canada where non- violent democratic action by a diverse set of people has been victorious. Astonishingly, ordinary citizens were successful in closing down the construction of Dump Site 41 in Tiny Township. Through hard work, dedication, and community building, the people of the Simcoe County Region and their legion of local, regional and international supporters stopped the building of dump site 41 that could have seriously contaminated local waterways and surrounding land masses.

Your Contribution Is Important to the Project

Your contribution to the Promotional Documentary would:

1. Tell the story of a diverse set of people coming together for a common cause and purpose, to shut down Site 41, to protect and preserve clean water for future generations. And doing so, in a peaceful democratic manner - which can truly stand as a model to be emulated by others used for future democratic action and advocacy, using both traditional and new media to help accomplish their goals.

2. Provide invaluable information to local, regional, national and even the world community of the incalculable and possibly irreversible damage landfill sites can make to local waterways and land masses and beyond - necessary for human and other life forms continued existence and future sustainability.

3. Explore alternatives to landfill sites and investigate various ‘waste to energy’ solutions, where clean water can be protected and preserved and related land masses aren’t encroached on for development.

4. Form the basis of the production of the long form theatrical release and national and international television broadcast on Site 41 and Beyond, and be the launch-pad for securing the necessary funding to produce this long form documentary through various sources.

Distribution of Promotional Documentary

The promotional documentary will be distributed to not-for profit organizations, granting agencies, foundations, socially responsible investment companies, progressive religious organizations, environmental and sustainability groups, theatrical distributors, and television broadcasters, as part of a coordinated campaign to solicit sufficient funding to produce the long form documentary for theatrical release and distribution, and television broadcast.


Todd Harris
C/O of Site 41: And Beyond Documentary Project

790 Eglinton Avenue West # 311
Toronto, Ontario M5N 1G2

Phone: (416) 789-4858
Fax: (416) 789-2537


Contact: Todd Harris - Producer/Director - C/O of Site 41: And Beyond Documentary Project -
790 Eglinton Avenue West # 311, Toronto, Ontario M5N 1G2 - Phone: (416) 789-4858 - Fax: (416) 789-2537
- Email: