“Trash Talk”

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This pile of garbage has lots of items that should be directed to recycling.

Deborah Powell



This pile of garbage has lots of items that should be directed to recycling.

Deborah Powell

MRC PONTIAC – What’s the best way to deal with domestic waste and recycling in the area? Is what we’re doing now working well? What does the future hold for the Pontiac in terms of new provincial guidelines in 2015? These questions will be addressed at the “Trash Talk” forum, March 4 at 7 pm, at the New Hope Church in Shawville.
“We’re planning a      public consultation in the spring/early summer, so I’m hoping that this will be like a practice run to see what people want to talk about. Our contract with the Pontiac Transfer Station   finishes in April 2015 and we want to involve the   public in the next action plan, to be completed by December 2014,” said Kari Richardson, Environment Coordinator for the MRC Pontiac.
The provincial government’s Action Plan 2011-2015 aims to make “end waste” the only residual material sent for disposal in Québec. End waste is what’s left after residual materials have been sorted, processed, and reclaimed; it cannot be processed any further to extract reclaimable content or reduce its polluting or     hazardous character. The goal is to reduce waste by 110 kg per person, per year, from the provincial average of 700 kg per person.
“The government has been slow implementing the 2011-2015 action plan. For rural communities, who don’t have door-to-door collection, I’m not sure all elements such as organics collection and processing will be feasible,” said Richardson.
Tom Orr, owner and operator of the Pontiac Transfer Station, will also speak on the topic. “Our per person waste average is considerably lower than the provincial average. This could be due to lower incomes in the region, which means people buy less and throw out less. Some garbage is also dealt with improperly by burning. People need to realize this can be a health          hazard.”
In terms of current waste management practices in the Pontiac, Orr said:  “I do believe most municipalities are trying to make sure  domestic waste is being gathered up, but when you attach a high price to it,  people choose other options. We need transparency in local governments to tell the truth about cost so people will feel okay about using    the services.”