The time is coming to make some decisions on the ultimate end destination for the Burin Peninsula’s waste, according to Harold Murphy.
“We either are going to have to make investments in a transfer station if we’re going to transfer it to St. John’s, or if not, we need to start trying to convince government officials to grant us funds to have a lined landfill so that we can properly dispose of wastes,” Murphy, chair of the Burin Peninsula Regional Service Board, told The Southern Gazette on Tuesday, Nov. 20.
Currently, waste in the region is sent to the board’s site, an unlined landfill, located just off the Burin Peninsula Highway near Jean de Baie.
“We know that with the volumes of waste we’re burying that, you know, we don’t want to end up down the road with a problem on our hands, so we want to be proactive and try to get the ball rolling,” Murphy said, pointing out there are no imminent concerns at the facility.
The board has its preference and has been consistent in telling the provincial government it believes a lined landfill on the Burin Peninsula is the cheaper option.
Murphy notes internal studies have shown shipping waste from the Burin Peninsula to Robin Hood Bay could cost somewhere between $320-$350 per household, double the current rate of $170, though he indicated a lined landfill will also mean an increase.
The board now has some fresh information at its disposal as it moves forward.
Marystown-based consultant firm Edwards and Associates was asked by the board to complete an update of its 2008 study of waste management options for the Burin Peninsula.
The board was recently provided with a draft copy of the report for review, Murphy said, noting he had only had a chance to skim the document thus far and could not comment on it until the final version is received.
The idea for the update came from the provincial government’s own waste management strategy review, Murphy said.
“We wanted to have ours updated so we could see where we stand,” he said.