Contaminated soil must go, says Shawnigan Residents Association

“The fact is that the soil should never have been brought to the site in the first place.”

The Shawnigan Residents Association is determined to have the contaminated soil at the controversial landfill near Shawnigan Lake removed.

SRA president Calvin Cook said numerous scientific and technical reports that were prepared before and during the operation of the landfill, owned by Cobble Hill Holdings and South Island Aggregates, concluded that the site was unsuitable for the purpose.

Cook said the companies have always maintained that the liners the soil is placed in will protect the environment, but he and his group contend that evidence has confirmed that this is not the case.

“The fact is that the soil should never have been brought to the site in the first place,” he said.

“We estimate there is about 100,000 tonnes of contaminated soil there now, and we’re committed to getting it all out of there. There are more suitable locations than this where the soil can be taken.”

The owners of Cobble Hill Holdings acknowledged earlier this week that they won’t seek to have the landfill’s operating permit restored after Environment Minister Mary Polak pulled it last month.

Polak said she cancelled the permit because the companies failed to provide the province with adjusted financial security reports by a set deadline, but the owners blamed it on politics as the provincial election looms in May, and have threatened to sue to recoup millions of dollars in losses.

Cook said the SRA’s trust in the government and regulatory system has also been “fractured” over the issue of the landfill, which has been at the centre of numerous court cases over the years.

But he said the association is trying to be “proactive” and has been in contact with Polak’s ministry on the future of the site.

“If they intend to leave the soil there, that won’t work for the community,” Cook said.

“The proponents are saying it’s benign, but if that’s the case, then why bring it here in the first place to be encapsulated and strictly monitored? We won’t rest until it’s removed.”

Ministry officials couldn’t be reached for comment.

Just Posted

Duncan Christian hosting Island girls A basketball championships

Five teams battle for two spots in provincials

LAKE FLASHBACK: Forest land sell-off, environmentalists a threat, and sewer system fix costly problem at L

TimberWest selling, a forest industry report scares locals, and sewage in the basement. Yikes!

Three men arrested after assault in Duncan

Victim suffered serious but non-life threatening injuries

Mary Lowther column: Growing combination for complete proteins

While we’re at it, why limit our gardens to “typical” crops?

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

Coming up in Cowichan: Bowl for Kids; Leaders of Tomorrow

Bowl for Kids Sake coming up in Cowichan Valley on March 3… Continue reading

Galchenyuk scores in OT as Coyotes edge Canucks 3-2

Vancouver manages single point as NHL playoff chase continues

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

More people signing up for compulsory vaccines

Maple Ridge mom says public tired of hearing about measles

UPDATE: Man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside B.C. elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Federal fisheries minister calls for precautionary approach to fish farming

Government still reviewing Federal Court’s decision on PRV – Wilkinson

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Poll: More voters believe Canada doing worse under Trudeau government

22 per cent believed the country is doing better and 27 per cent said things are the same

Most Read