by Ken Mariette, Citizen Journalist
You’ve seen it on TV, read it in the papers and heard about it on the radio. Another environmental disaster! “Smog kills hundreds in China”, “a fuel truck crashes and spills its load into Goldstream Park”, “Japan’s nuclear plant leaks into the Pacific Ocean” and “an Ontario town experiences serious health issues from an abandoned nickel mine”.
Well, as harsh as these realities are, we in Central Saanich are experiencing our own environmental disaster; albeit on a much smaller, but equally serious, scale. Ours originates from a well-intended, but poorly thought out, policy.
In the interest of extending the useful life of the Hartland landfill facility, the CRD Waste Management Committee proposed that, as of 2015, no organic food waste would be allowed at the site. Plans were developed in advance of this self-imposed deadline, and embraced by several CRD communities, with enthusiasm and optimism. Investments were made in ‘green’ collection bins for organic kitchen scraps (including meat, fish and poultry), new collection trucks ordered and public education informing that, as of 2015, Hartland would no longer accept organic food waste.
Yes, once again the Greater Victoria communities were ahead of the curve, a la the “blue box program”……. or so they thought!! Hold on…. how and where is the CRD going to dispose or process potentially tens of thousands of tons of annual organic food waste? Why not compost it on local farms?
Thus begins the tragic saga of our own environmental disaster.