Despite opposition from a local coalition, directors of the Greater Vancouver Regional District voted to send a proposal for a new GVRD landfill on to the next step of an environmental review process, with a plan to opening the facility in 2007.
The landfill would be built on private land bought by the GVRD in 2000 because its Cache Creek landfill will be full by 2008. The sandy soil near Ashcroft is considered perfect for such a landfill. The site is 60 kilometres west of Kamloops.
A 55-day public consultation period will begin in late August, then go on to the provincial environmental assessment office. From there, it goes to three ministers who have 45 days to respond. The process could stretch up to six months before receiving final approval.
GVRD chief administrative officer Johnny Carline has been quoted saying that the region will vigorously pursue initiatives to reduce the amount of garbage the district produces, but some residue will always remain. He says having a local landfill is better than garbage export to Washington or Oregon.
Representatives of the Nlaka’pamux Tribal Council oppose the plan and resent the garbage being sent to their back yard. Chief Bob Pasco said the district board appeared unwilling to budge from a predetermined plan.
"I think there’s a better way to deal with it," Pasco said. "That’s our homelandand it’s going to be there forever."