After rallying support from local governments that want to see biosolids better managed in B.C., a TNRD director said he was disappointed by the Ministry of Environment response to his UBCM resolution.
Randy Murray, director for Lower Nicola (Area M), said it’s a sign that the issue will have to be pursued though other channels, possibly as a political issue during next spring’s provincial election.
Murray said he’s tried every avenue of possibility in an effort to get the provincial government to undertake a comprehensive review of the practice of land application of biosolids but without result.
“It forces you into a position where there’s got to be a grass-roots movement for change,” he said.
That’s what developed in the Nicola Valley after five local First Nations declared a moratorium on land application of biosolids in 2015. A coalition of groups formed to pressure the province to consider the broader implications for health, environment and wildlife. Direct political pressure went all the way to Premier Christy Clark’s constituency office in Kelowna, which the chiefs occupied for a short time. As well, residents in Barnhartvale and Dallas have protested a nearby biosolids mixing operation on the Blackwell dairy farm, where the combine material is used as a soil enhancer.
The province established a comprehensive review of biosolids regulations April 4 and promises a “policy intentions paper” by fall with full public consultations in spring 2017. The scope of the review, however, is narrower than what some groups wanted. First Nations pulled out of the process in April, a protest after they were relegated to observer status.
Citing concerns about the lack of public consultation prior to biosolids application within the Agricultural Land Reserve, Murray’s UBCM resolution called on the government to examine and make changes to the regulatory process. A government response, received June 16 by the TNRD, was “very disappointing,” Murray said.
He described the current process as a “quasi review with a short timeline,” a stop-gap measure.
“I think they’re hoping it will just fade in time for the provincial election.”
He and others in the Nicola Valley want to see the province move towards use of pyrolysis, an industrial process that would ensure safe handling of biosolids, a byproduct of municipal wastewater treatment.
July 20, 2016 12:10pm
Mary Urysz says:
July 20, 2016 08:22am
George Christou says:
July 20, 2016 07:18am
Don Vincent says:
July 19, 2016 09:42am
Allen Peters says:
July 19, 2016 08:53am
Melody Simon says:
July 19, 2016 08:34am
The true science is conclusive on this dangerous practice, and Canada should be practicing "First World", waste disposal like many countries in Europe.
Please be proactive and educate yourself on the dangers of toxic sewer sludge a.k.a. biosolids by visiting our website http://www.biosolidsbc.com/ or http://sludgefacts.org/.
Norman D. Drynock says:
July 19, 2016 08:23am
To ensure this does happen the provincial and federal government's need to form and pass a 'Ground Soil' protection Bill. By protecting the soil, will protect our waterways above and underground.
Another benefit is if all cities build their own bio solids incinerator system as part of their waste water plants can power themselves.
Leona Antoine says:
July 19, 2016 07:34am
Study of the 1000s chemicals recycled in our food chain should seriously be taken into account of how it affects our ecosystem and our health.