Cleanup Proposal In Government Hands
The Joint Action Group is ready and waiting to see the cleanup of Canada's worst toxic waste site begin. During a historical round table session in Sydney, Wednesday, members of the group unanimously approved a motion to remove and destroy contaminated waste from the Sydney tar ponds and coke ovens sites.
That recommendation falls
in the laps of the federal,
provincial and municipal governments
today for consideration.
During that process it was
learned that co-burning the
toxic sludge at a power plant or
cement kiln was the community's
favourite method of
destruction and pre-treating
the contaminated waste before
it's destroyed was also desireable.
It was noted that co-burning could take place as close as the Nova Scotia Power Plant in Point Aconi. JAG and government representatives from that rural community recently in a bid to provide information addressing issues raised by residents.
If it's deemed that the Point Aconi power plant isn't an option, "we expect government will look around to see if there is a cement kiln somewhere or some other fluidized bed incinerator with a co-burning unit, such as there is at Point Aconi, to take care of that aspect of cleaning up and destroying contaminated substances," said Fraser.
There was some protest
voiced as the meeting neared
Marlene Kane, a concerned
citizen and non-voting member
of JAG roundtable, said she
couldn't support the motion
being forwarded to government.
Garth Bangay, Atlantic regional director for Environment Canada, described Wednesday's landmark meeting as the "cherry on the sundae. Let's enjoy it." "It's the night we've all been waiting for," added Don Ferguson, senior adviser for Health Canada.
Whether or not the completion of
the historical motion
also means JAG is history, has
yet to be decided. There will be
a meeting with JAG members
and government partners June
9 to discuss the group's future
Government tried to incinerate the 700,000 tonnes of contaminated sludge at the Sydney tar ponds in the early 90s - a failed attempt that cost taxpayers about $55 million. A suggestion soon after to cap the sludge was denounced by the community.