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Construction is well underway on three organics receiving and processing facilities as part of the Regional District of East Kootenay’s (RDEK) Regional Organics Initiative.
“This project focuses solely on the construction of capital infrastructure to receive and process organics,” explains RDEK General Manager of Engineering & Environmental Services, Kevin Paterson. “In addition to residential-type organics that will be accepted through municipal organics curbside programs, these facilities will incorporate green, yard and biosolid waste generated or collected by local governments in the region.”
The Elk Valley Receiving and Processing Facility is being constructed at the Sparwood Transfer Station; the Central Receiving and Processing Facility, which will accept materials from the Cranbrook / Kimberley and surrounding catchment, is being constructed at the Central Subregion Landfill; and, the Columbia Valley Receiving and Processing Facility is being constructed on a piece of land in the Invermere Industrial Park previously used for septage storage.
“Some municipalities, such as the City of Kimberley, applied separately for grant funding to establish their own municipal curbside organics collection programs and are already collecting, or are in the process of getting ready to collect, municipal organics. This project will ensure there is a proper facility to receive and process material collected through these municipal programs,” adds Paterson. “As Kimberley has already started its curbside program, the RDEK is stockpiling those collected organics on site until the new receiving area is complete and ready to begin processing.”
Development of a region-wide organics collection program would be a future phase for the RDEK and would require additional grants or funding before it could proceed on a wider scale.
The material produced at these facilities will initially be Class B compost that will be used within local government operations as it’s not certified for public use at this time.
The Waste Audit completed by the RDEK in 2018 determined up to 29% of the waste being landfilled in the East Kootenay is made up of organics.
The total project cost is over $3 million with over $666,000 for each of the three sites funded by the Provincial and Federal governments through the Organics Infrastructure Program and an additional $500,000 in funding from Columbia Basin Trust. To learn more about the project, visit engage.rdek.bc.ca/organics