« December 2008: Food bank offers good rate of return | Main | January 2009: Books teach in mysterious ways »

January 01, 2009


Buddy Boyd

Re: February 2010 editorial: SCRD keeps pushing for the answer they want

Brian,I have to commend the Harbour Spiel to be the first publication ever to put it on the line and be honest about what is happening with the entire SCRD's solid waste management plan. I have watched for over 6 years, as local publications in the south end of the Sunshine Coast dance around this issue and continually vote for unsustainable waste management options with a lack of coverage off what the options are.

During this same time, the SCRD's metal bins at the IGA Mall in Gibsons has turned into a free garbage dump off site. All recyclables that aren't contaminated with garbage has to be trucked to Vancouver recycling processors. And we, the taxpayers, pays for the garbage that is dumped off at both the RD's sites. Gibsons Recycling Depot is 2 blocks from the IGA Mall. Yet, the SCRD has trucked the items dropped off at their Gibsons site, all the way to Sechelt, 5 times a day, 7 days per week. For over 6 years now. Every week, their SCRD diesel burning polluting truck travels 1200 kilometres just taking this stuff to Sechelt, to be compacted, then it is all driven back through Gibsons, whence it came, to the Ferry in Langdale.

That is over 400,000 kilometres in that time, just driving back and forth between Gibsons and Sechelt then back. It hasn't even gone to Vancouver yet??? The bins at the IGA Mall and the mall in Sechelt has cost us, the taxpayers over $2,000,000. What is worse, glass is landfilled and all the efforts to clean glass is wasted.

The almost 30 years that I have in the transportation and waste industries has given me a unique perspective. Knowing that the SCRD has spent over $300,000 in 6 years on consultants to get their "Zero Waste " plan established in our community is shocking. And what do we get? Trucking Pender Harbours waste to Sechelt and Gibsons contaminated recyclables to Sechelt. Wow!

The SCRD's Zero Waste plan is nothing more then an environmental ponzie scheme. The environment isn't even on the radar or a consideration. It is a tax grab!

Gibsons Recycling Depot was invited to make a presentation to the Ministry of the Environemnt and has been selected to make a presentation to the Green Team at London Drugs next week as well as we have been selected to have our Resource Recovery Park concept posted on the Walmart's Green Summit Web site on Feb 10th? Our Styrofoam Recycling program as well will be featured. www.walmartgreenbusinesssummit.com

Yet, the SCRD has never contacted us ever, about either of these innovative landfill diversion ideas. We are invited to make presentations all over our province. The North Okanogan Regional District has purchased a Styrofoam Recycling machine like ours. I am flying up their shortly to train their staff. The SCRD has never asked us about Styrofoam Recycling nor accepted our invitation to come and see our demonstration. Regional employees from all over our province have come to our facility to see what Styrofoam Recycling is about. But no one from our Regional District?? Ever!

We advocate less trucking, backyard and home composting, a community garden and organics drop off site. We have been experimenting with an indoor electric composter for over a year now and have not thrown any organics in our waste. It is simple and extremely low energy consumption. Yet, no interest from our local government?? Requires little or no new taxes.

It is about trucking, curbside collection and landfill closures, to create a centralize monopoly in Sechelt. Wonder if the residents of Sechelt want all these garbage trucks rumbling through their community? Commingled contaminated plastics is already shipped to the SCRD's contractor in Sechelt, all the way from Squamish. Powell River might be sending their contaminated recyclables through Pender Harbour and Sechelt as well.

So, supporting a massive trucking scheme is in the RD's best interest if creating a monopoly is their goal. And you don't have to be a rocket scientist to look back over the past 6 years and see that Zero Waste and Resource Recovery options are just Green Washing buzz words when run through the RD's "sustainability filter"!

We can not and should never design any recycling or waste management plan that rewards the lazy. Curbside collection and the huge new tax that comes with it, does just that. And the majority of us who are perfectly capable of somehow getting food into our homes can easily combine our shopping trips to drop off our recyclables if the RD supported real Resource Recovery/Zero Waste options! But we are being sold the illusion. And we get to pay a new tax to fund a massive trucking infrastructure! We can help those who are unable to drop things off. This is what good neighbours do. Rather then a huge new tax to collect a few recyclable items. Any thoughts as to who will pay when the price of diesel goes through the roof again?

Good on you Pender Harbour residents for being the first to expose this scheme. It has taken over 6 years but Sunshine Coast Residents are not fools. The pending RD survey will be a thinly disguised effort that will confuse, not educate citizens. Egmont, Pender Harbour Area, Gambier and Keats are always taxed to fund such schemes but receive little if any benefits.

Real Zero Waste initiatives works from the position of utilizing common sense and innovative ideas, less trucking not more! We are being sold the illusion!

Buddy Boyd
Gibsons Recycling Depot

The comments to this entry are closed.