Citizens taking action ~ Vancouver, Lower Mainland, and beyond.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Good reporting by Jeff Nagel

Hats off to Jeff Nagel of Black Press who continues to dog Metro Vancouver's waste activities, including this embarrassing disclosure that the new operator of the Burnaby incinerator (Covanta) let cadmium levels go way up and never bothered to report them to Metro Vancouver.

Paul Henderson, who moved from landfill duties at the City of Vancouver to incinerator duties at Metro, sounded shocked:

"Solid waste manager Paul Henderson said there was a range of sample results, but the highest cadmium readings were more than double the provincial limit.... "It wasn't marginally over the limit, they were substantially over the limit," he said.

Bitter irony that Wastech, which has fought Metro's new incinerator plan, had to take the toxic fly ash at their Cache Creek landfill.

I wonder if any cadmium got in the carrots in my backyard....

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Are producers going to join MMBC's plan?

The clock is ticking down towards the deadline (November 19) when thousands of companies that produce packaged products and printed materials sold in British Columbia have to submit their plan to the government for recycling their waste. It's our bold new step in producer responsibility.

But these companies have been strangely silent.

Instead, an organization called MMBC has been presenting itself as the appointed body chosen by these companies to put together a "stewardship plan" for them.

MMBC has now issued its plan. They will unveil it at a public consultation next Monday. No matter what the public thinks -- will the producers themselves sign on to MMBC's plan?

It's hard to see why.

For one thing there are some pretty significant industries that aren't going to get any service under this plan -- even though they are being asked to pay for it. Toothpaste tubes, for instance, are not going to be collected when the plan rolls out in 2014.

Crest and Colgate-Palmolive and Tom's of Maine and all the rest of these big players are going to have to pay MMBC "fees" even though they are not getting any service. Sort of like a tax. Except that nobody elected MMBC. Least of all you and me.

The MMBC board is not very representative of the companies obligated under BC legislation. There's nobody there from the Printed Paper industry. Maybe the newspaper industry are still thinking of backing after all, as they threatened to do last April.

The consultation is open to the public in person and as a webinar. Register online and see what happens.