Tag Archives: COLA

UPDATE: City will appeal MOE decision on Carp landfill service area

City of Ottawa solicitor Rick O’Connor recommended that city staff appeal a Ministry of Environment decision to allow the Carp landfill to accept waste from Western Quebec.

The memo was circulated to media outlets yesterday, and Councillor Shad Qadri confirmed on Facebook that the city would be moving forward with an appeal.

“…for leave to be obtained, it is only necessary that a preliminary review of the evidence shows that the decision is unreasonable and that significant harm to the environment could result. Therefore, in light of the City’s longstanding position on limiting the geographic area from which waste is brought to Ottawa landfills, it is my view that it would be appropriate to seek leave to appeal the MOECC’s decision in this instance,” he wrote.


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Carp landfill facility gets ok for Quebec garbage, despite City’s objections

As Lando said in the Empire Strikes Back…

You might remember hearing back in September that Waste Management applied to the Ontario Ministry of the Environment for permission to bring construction and demolition waste from Quebec to the landfill facility on Carp Road. Continue reading


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COLA: Put the “public” back in landfill Public Liaison Committee

As one of the conditions for operating the expanded Carp Road Landfill, Waste Management had to establish a Public Liaison Committee (PLC) to “provide a forum for public concerns to be raised and for mitigation measures to be discussed where appropriate”.

We’re beginning to find out how inadequately the PLC is meeting those goals.

The PLC was established in 2014 and had its first meeting in June that year. It has 12 voting members, including two members from Waste Management, five City of Ottawa councillors from neighbouring wards, three residents and two members of the local business community.

Here are some of our concerns about the committee:

  1. Public” Liaison Committee meetings are closed to the public!
    COLA asked if a representative could sit in on future PLC meetings as an observer. Councillor El-Chantiry, the PLC’s chair, responded that meetings are not open to the public. Under the terms of reference, PLC members who speak to the communitymust ensure their views reflect the consensus of the PLC. We were told that we can’t attend, because we might hear dissenting views around the table. Contrast that to Waste Management’s Twin Creeks landfill in Southwestern Ontario: PLC meetings there are completely open to the public. Anyone can request to make verbal presentations of up to 15 minutes. Only confidential matters are dealt with in-camera.
  2. The PLC’s terms of reference muzzle city councillors.
    The terms of reference state: “Members who speak to the community must ensure that the views and information shared are that which reflects the consensus view of the PLC.” Effectively, that means that councillors can’t freely express a point of view that contradicts the consensus of the PLC, whatever that may be. We think that councillors should be free to speak their mind on ALL matters relating to the landfill.
  3. The criteria for PLC public members is unclear
    The resident and business members of the PLC were selected in 2014 by local councillors after a rather poorly advertised application process. Details of the selection and biographies of the selected candidates have never been made available to the public they represent. The terms of reference don’t define criteria for selecting members, nor are there any guidelines for how long they can serve for.
  4. The PLC web site is inadequate.
    The PLC is required to have a website providing email contact information, functionality to receive and reply to comments from the public, and publish notices of meetings and minutes. What’s there now is a bare bones web page that fails to address most of these requirements. There is no email posted to contact the PLC, there are no bios of the members, no dates for upcoming meetings, and minutes are often not published until months after a meeting has occurred. (You can visit the web page here: http://wcec.wm.com/wcecplc.asp.)

COLA (Coalition for Landfill Accountability) represents eleven local community associations, with a mandate to educate people on the landfill and encourage public engagement in the development process. As well, COLA wants to ensure that all commitments made during the approval process are carried out.

COLA believes that the PLC must:

  • open meetings to the public
  • ensure greater transparency and communications
  • clarify terms of reference around the selection of public members
  • update its terms of reference to allow all members – especially councillors – to speak freely on all issues relating to the Carp Road Landfill

 

Tanya Hein is president of the Stittsville Village Association, one of the members groups of COLA.)


 

We welcome letters to the editor and guest columns. They can be sent to feedback@stittsvillecentral.ca. All letters are subject to editing for length or clarity. Letters must include the writer’s name and a daytime phone number for confirmation.


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LETTER: City’s vision for garbage stinks

“Look, we all know that garbage happens… The City of Ottawa’s performance in this area frankly stinks.”

Carp Dump II has the passed the Environmental Compliance Application (ECA) and the so called “West Carleton Environmental Centre” is now all but certain.

Frankly, I am more than just a little surprised how little I’ve read about this inevitability.

When the first dump was opened in Carp the early 1970s, it was essentially for local use and it was in the middle of nowhere. Now, some forty years later, the new dump (which will be beside the old one) happens to be in the middle of growing suburbia, and for the use of all of Ontario.

We all know that garbage happens. What is necessary is a well laid plan that is environmentally sound and economically viable. The City of Ottawa’s performance in this area frankly stinks.

Plasco and Orgaworld were both whiffs of legendary proportion, and yet here we are continuing to move forward without a viable 30 year plan.

Operating without a plan continues to cost us money and will have a negative effect on some of our residents’ quality of life.  It could also harm our environment, and it will devalue property.

I think we all know that landfills are not the answer. It’s the way of a bygone era. No one wants them except the companies that make a fortune operating them.

Yet, despite lingering complaints about the first dump, the City of Ottawa is on the verge of adding two more landfill sites.   We already have four!

That’s not very green for a supposedly very green city.

 

Landfills are not the way of the future, but unfortunately, it seems to be the way of our city.

Moving forward, transparency is a must, and clearly our neighbours should all be entitled to live in an environment that is clean, safe and healthy.

Jonathan Mark
Dunrobin, Ontario

(Jonathan Mark is a broadcaster, Chair for the Ward 5 Citizens’ Council (W5CC), and a candidate for West Carleton Ward in the last municipal election.)


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LETTER: Landfill compensation needs community consultation

Re: Stittsville misses out on bulk of landfill compensation

“…there is no obvious process in place to ensure the community has input into how the money is used…”

Community compensation is a thin silver lining to the cloud of having a large landfill in our collective back yard. Unfortunately, the existing compensation program has been largely shrouded in secrecy, with few residents realizing its existence, and even fewer having any information about how projects are considered or evaluated, or about how the funds are allocated between the westernmost wards. Continue reading


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COMMENT: Ontario waste reduction strategy a good start, but needs teeth

(Photo: A Waste Management truck at the Carp Road Landfill. Although the expanded landfill will be licensed to accept commercial and residential waste, it’s expected that the vast majority of landfill material will be industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) waste.)

On November 27, the Ontario government posted its “Draft Strategy for a Waste-Free Ontario: Building the Circular Economy” for public comment. The draft strategy admits that Ontario produces too much garbage and that diversion and recycling in the province has stalled. It also directly links waste and climate change.

The draft Strategy embraces a vision for “an Ontario where we have zero waste and zero greenhouse gas emissions from the waste sector and where all resources, organic or non-organic, are used and reused productively, maximizing their recovery and reintegrating recovered materials back into the economy.”

The draft legislations puts an emphasis on producer responsibility and supports innovation to address packaging and waste production. The strategy outlines three key goals: 1. Increase Resource Productivity and Reduce Waste; 2. Enable an Efficient and Effective Recycling System; and 3. Create Conditions to Support Sustainable End-Markets. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that many of the proposed tools already exist but have never been enforced. Also the need to reduce our dependency on landfills by banning the disposal of recyclable materials has been a major plank of provincial policy for years. However, the bans were never applied to IC&I waste producers which makes up the majority of garbage in Ontario.

Previous versions of waste reduction policies all featured “carrots” and “sticks” but failed because the sticks were never applied. A lack of enforcement of existing regulations and the unwillingness of the Ontario government to restrict landfill capacity is a key reason the province is so far behind. This time the government has to put some real teeth and meaningful action behind the words to be at all effective in getting to zero waste.

Ontarians have until February 24, 2016 to comment on the draft strategy.

(Olivia Nixon lives in West Carleton and is one of the residents involved with COLA – Coalition for Landfill Accountability, where this article originally appeared.)


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Waste Management gets Environmental Compliance Approval for expanded landfill

Waste Management has passed one of the last regulatory hurdles required to move ahead with the expansion of the Carp Road landfill.

Ross Wallace, a company official, sent an email to stakeholders today to inform that that the Ministry of the Environment and Climiate Change has granted an Environmental Compliance Approval for the site. Continue reading


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Community groups ask for role in landfill negotiations

(Press release from COLA.)

COLA (Coalition for Landfill Accountability) wants the City of Ottawa to engage in real and meaningful consultation with residents during the negotiations of the Host Municipal Responsibility Agreement (HMRA) for the Carp Road landfill expansion.

The HMRA is being negotiated between the City and Waste Management (WM) behind closed doors, with no community engagement. This lack of transparency is unacceptable.

***

BACKGROUND: The Site Plan Control for Waste Management’s Carp Road landfill expansion (or “West Carleton Environmental Centre”) was approved by the City on October 28, 2015. One of the conditions of approval is that Waste Management enter into a HMRA with the City. The HMRA is supposed to address a number of community concerns including:

  • Community compensation
  • Odour management
  • Property value protection
  • Groundwater safety
  • Traffic
  • Transparency

This is similar to the process in 2001, when the City of Ottawa and WM negotiated in secret, and came up with an agreement that left much to be desired:

  • It did not include property value protection for neighbouring residents and businesses.
  • The negotiated “cost-per-tonne” levy was only $1 per tonne. (Recently- negotiated agreements in Southern Ontario have been set at $6 per tonne.) This represents significant revenue to the City given that the proposed landfill can accept up to 400,000 tonnes of garbage per year.
  • Community compensation included an additional $60,000 per year to support “environmental initiatives and local projects” in nearby wards. Projects funded by the community compensation were selected by WM and west end city councillors, again behind closed doors. The community had no input into where that money was spent.

***

OUR REQUEST: COLA is asking the City of Ottawa and Waste Management to consult and include residents and community associations in the negotiation process now, instead of after a draft is completed. Community input and engagement in the HMRA is vital to the development of a fair and effective agreement that benefits citizens.

***

Coalition for Landfill Accountability (COLA) is a group of residents and community associations in West Carleton, Stittsville and Kanata who are concerned about the proposed expansion of the Carp Road Landfill and its future impact on the community. Member associations include:
• Stittsville Village Association
• Huntley Manor Community Association
• Richardson Corridor Community Association
• Crossing Bridge Community Association
• Fairwinds Community Association
• Jackson Trails Community Association
• Southwest Stittsville Community Association
• Ward 5 Citizens Council
• Kanata Beaverbrook Community Association


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COLA group launches new website

COLA web site screen shot

The Coalition for Landfill Accountability (COLA) launched a new web site today at colaottawa.ca.  The web site will be a resource for residents to learn about issues related to the expansion of the Carp Road landfill.

COLA is a group of nine community associations in Kanata, West Carleton and Stittsville.  The group’s members include the Stittsville Village Association, and residents groups from Crossing Bridge, Fairwinds, Jackson Trails and Southwest Stittsville.

In late October, the City of Ottawa approved Waste Management’s site plan application for the landfill.  The next step in the municipal approval process is to finalize Host Community Agreement that covers things like property value protection, traffic, and community compensation.

Waste Management still needs Environmental Compliance Approval from the Ontario Ministry of Environment before they can start operations.


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Residents push for landfill accountability

EDITOR’S NOTE: StittsvilleCentral.ca is lending our support to a new community initiative called the Coalition for Landfill Accountability (COLA).  

It’s a group made up of residents and community associations who have concerns about the proposed expansion of the Carp Road Landfill.  

They’ve launched a web site, Twitter feed and Facebook page, and they are hoping to re-engage people in Stittsville, West Carleton and Kanata on the landfill issue.

With so many new people moving into our community, a lot of residents don’t know the details of the proposed landfill expansion, or about the problems with the existing landfill when it was in operation.  Take odour for example: between 2006-2009, there were 7,500 complaints about the smell.

Here’s a note that the group shared earlier today. Continue reading


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