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City of Campbell River interested in setting up a composting centre

The City of Campbell River will issue a request for proposals for a public-private partnership to develop a regional scale composting facility.

“The City is working with the Comox Strathcona Waste Management to explore the option of the facility processing organic wastes from communities throughout the region. The RFP calls for a facility that will meet the needs of Campbell River, but that would be scalable to potentially meet the needs of the broader region,” says Councillor Mary Storry, who holds the Council portfolio for public works.

“The 2012 Regional Solid Waste Management Plan prioritizes the need to divert organics from the regional landfills as a key priority for the regional service areas,” Councillor Storry adds. “The plan also identifies Campbell River as a potential location for a composting facility to process organic waste from regional residents, institutions and businesses. All of the major communities within the regional service areas have expressed interest in curbside organics collection, and in order to make this a reality, the region requires a facility to process organics.”

The Comox Strathcona Waste Management Board is currently undertaking a small scale organics collection and processing pilot with the Village of Cumberland and Town of Comox, and a long-term solution for organics is needed.

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“The City issued a request for expressions of interest for an organics facility last year, and we had strong interest from private industry proponents, which has led us to issuing the RFP,” adds Councillor Storry.

The request for proposals is for a privately constructed, financed and operated facility that would process sewage biosolids, yardwaste, household and commercial organic waste. The City, as a partner, would be providing suitably zoned land and an initial capital investment of up to $1 million to the successful proponent if the facility is developed at the City site located adjacent to the Norm Wood Environmental Centre. This funding would be used to offset the costs of site preparation and utility servicing, surface water infrastructure, roadways and outdoor working pads, and allow the successful proponent to install state-of-the-art odour controls. At the end of the partnership, ownership of the entire facility will revert back to the City.

Alternative locations within the City will also be considered, provided that the sites have the correct zoning and regulatory approvals.

Typically, about 35 per cent of a community’s waste can be diverted from the landfill through curbside residential composting programs alone.

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Development of a regional-scaled compost facility in Campbell River would provide a variety of opportunities for the City, including:

  • Opportunity for significant waste diversion and an enhanced service for residents
  • Beneficial reuse of what is currently disposed of as waste
  • Reduced greenhouse gas emissions associated with disposal of organic materials at landfills
  • Increased trucking efficiency (trucks can haul other waste on their return route)
  • Opportunity for sewage biosolids composting (reducing land and plant upgrade requirements and related costs)
  • Local job opportunities related to organics processing

– Contributed by the Campbell River city hall.

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