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Squamish wants Whistler’s garbage for regional landfill

Squamish council approves regional landfill in principle and looks to Whistler for support

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"I think it’s a matter of setting priorities for the limited amount of financial resources that are available."

The challenge, said David Allen, manager of utilities and community services with the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District, is balancing the environmental and economic costs and coming up with the most sustainable option.

"My own view, and it’s a personal view, is that it’s the preferred solution to deal with your own waste within your own region if you can do that," he said.

"That’s sort of higher up the environmental ladder I think than shipping it to another region."

The fact that the garbage in the corridor now has less organic waste, due to the diversion of organics to Carney’s new composting facility, is another plus said Allen.

Organics he explained create a lot of the leachate problems in landfills.

More and more organic material is expected to be diverted from the regional waste stream.

Whistler’s General Manager of Engineering and Public Works was not available for comment this week.

In an earlier interview with Pique Newsmagazine, Brian Barnett said Whistler would be interested in a Squamish landfill that was up to provincial codes.

"Obviously it would be better to keep the money in the corridor from a sustainability perspective, but we’ll have to see what they come up with for their site," he said.

The two communities must decide if the regional landfill option is the best option for them.

The SLRD will also have a say in any plans to export garbage from the region. A public consultation period is also part of the process.

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