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November 19, 2008


Compost into cash:

By my estimates the capital costs of $69,000,000 + for the defunct, malodorous composter and the proposed one will require at least 23 years to pay off, interest charges notwithstanding. Let us also not forget the Ministry of the Environment charges against both the city and the city employed waste manager resulting in fines of $$$??? - a very costly tax payer, funded penalty!
The city clamors to be seen in the light of environmental leadership. But the reality of it’s ill conceived and failed experiments from SUBBOUR, the 3 bag system and the discarded compost plant, bulldozed ahead with complete disregard for protection of the environment, Guelph’s future water supply, the compost plant’s neighboring residents’ quality of life and the taxpayers of Guelph.
Why isn’t the Province getting on board to regionalize composting if it is supposedly such a feasible idea? Perhaps they know that it's a lose-lose situation? Waterloo had some very valid reasons for not composting in their city and they do not want to be apart of the cash sucking program for obvious reasons.
Guelph City Council were against shipping Guelph’s trash out of town due to the pollution from trucking and extra traffic mandating that municipalities should look after their own garbage. Why is it that they now want other municipalities to ship their garbage to us, polluting our air and plugging up our roads with trucks instead of requiring them to look after their own garbage?
The defunct compost facility was an expensive experiment, fraudulently masquerading as environmental leadership, where outside waste was composted at a cost far higher than the income generated. Once again Guelph tax payers were compelled to finance another bank-buster to assuage certain individual's unworkable ideologies?
Drop this plan and free the people living near the planned site from any further agonizing intrusions on them enjoying their properties. Why should they be required to "hunker" down inside their homes again and why should the taxpayers of Guelph take another massive hit in wallet?

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Joanne Shuttleworth is the newsroom lead in municipal affairs coverage for the Guelph Mercury. She is a former Guelph YWCA Woman of Distinction honouree and a past winner of an Ontario Newspapers Award for her work as an editor. You can reach her at jshuttleworth@guelphmercury.com

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