Editorial: Kitchen scrap program costly

CRD's ban on kitchen scraps will cost taxpayers a lot

People are scrambling, trying to figure out what to do with their kitchen scraps now that the Capital Regional District has banned them from the Hartland Landfill.

It’s easy enough for people with gardens and outdoor spaces where they can place a composter, but what about those folks who live in apartments and suites?

Of all the refuse being placed in the landfill, one would think that organic materials would be the least of their worries. Organics break down and become green matter and soil. Why is this such a problem when people are throwing away disposable diapers and pet feces, cigarette butts and other such things into the landfill? What about commercial kitchen waste?

There is a cost associated with the disposal of organic kitchen waste and it seems the recyclers and disposal people will be reaping the rewards of the CRD’s ban. It is going to cost, especially low income people, including seniors, money they don’t have or could be better spend on buying that food in the first place. The CRD is losing money with this program as well, about $5million.

We already have people sorting their returnables, cardboard and glass and that is a good thing. These items are easy to monitor, but how will you monitor kitchen scraps? Is someone going to stick their nose in the garbage bags? Will there be fines levied if a chicken bone gets tossed?  What about the problems with rats and other vermin being attracted by the overloaded kitchen scraps tote?

One would have thought the CRD would have a composting facility in place before they started on this program. There’s a few things the CRD is doing that leaves one scratching their head.

There is no composting facility in the CRD to take in all of the kitchen scraps and it is being shipped across the strait to the Lower Mainland. Doesn’t this seem awfully strange to you – and costly? It’s our tax dollars.

So now we have rising water rates because we don’t use enough water and where the whole idea is to conserve water. But there is no move to cut expenses at the CRD level to make up for the shortfall. Once people get used to paying for something, it seems that ever rising costs creep in, just check your tax bill and compare it over the years.

These programs are all good ideas but the best idea would be to have the infrastructure in place before instituting such a wide spread plan. Doesn’t seem very smart from this side of the compost bucket.