As part of a service delivery review, the Cowichan Valley Regional District has scrapped its drywall disposal program, board chair Jon Lefebure confirmed Tuesday.
A staff report noted drywall handling was a relatively small percentage of the work undertaken at the Bings Creek and Peerless Road recycling centres but considerable resources were being spent on the program — too much for the amount of work.
“Eliminating drywall from the recycling centres will reduce the cost associated with remediating and landfilling asbestos contaminated material ($10,000 for 2017); and, save approximately $2,500 in hauling costs, as hauling drywall to [Fisher Road Recycling] will no longer be necessary,” said the report. “In addition, the staff resources required to manage the drywall program can be allocated to other areas of need.”
The CVRD had contracted Fisher Road Recycling to transport the material to the Lower Mainland for recycling. A health and safety provision allows them to cancel that arrangement. What’s more, the regional district will now be directing potential customers to the private company, and to Coast Environmental, another drywall disposal operation in the Valley.
“There are private companies already set up to handle it. They want to handle it,” Lefebure said. “We were not as well set up to take it and there were potential health issues with our workers and it just seemed that it made sense to not try and offer this service when it was covered off by other companies and when we couldn’t handle it very well within our facility.”