A recent decision by Thompson-Nicola Regional District’s board of directors to approve in principle an extension to the Cache Creek landfill was not related to delays in building the eco-depot in Clearwater and others elsewhere in the TNRD, according to Mayor John Harwood.
Non-recyclable waste from the local facility, once it opens, will be taken to Heffley Creek. Only a portion of TNRD waste goes to Cache Creek, said the mayor. That facility mostly receives waste from the Lower Mainland.
Construction of the Clearwater eco-depot, which had been expected to open this fall, is now expected to begin next spring, he said. Other eco-depots in the TNRD have been similarly delayed.
Harwood put the blame for the delays on slow performance by consultants working for the federal government.
The long-delayed approval for the eco-depot came through 2 1/2 weeks after the TNRD board sent a letter to the federal government, objecting to the slow progress.
The amendment to extend the Cache Creek landfill will now be sent to the Ministry of Environment for final approval. Belkorp Environmental Services Inc. which operates the landfill, proposed the amendment.
Belkorp underwent an extensive consultation process with TNRD residents to gauge their opinion on the proposed amendment, which will increase the Cache Creek Landfill by 42 hectares to the overall landfill footprint (existing site is 47 hectares).
“Belkorp’s commitment to this project and the additional capacity will provide continued employment in the western TNRD for many years,” said Andy Anderson, chair of the Regional Solid Waste Management Plan implementation committee.
“The double composite lined landfill will provide ‘state of the art’ environmental controls.”
The extension will provide disposal for about 12.6 million tonnes of municipal solid waste and environmental control will be provided by a double composite liner system to contain leachate and landfill gas – this is twice the standard required by the USEPA and the proposed provincial criteria.
Belkorp conducted a web-based public consultation program during spring of this year and has already received a certificate from the BC Environmental Assessment Office for the project. This was required prior to bringing the project forward to the TNRD board for consideration.