Re: "Esquimalt reticence a sewage hurdle" and "DND lands hold great potential," Nov. 3.
About two years ago, I co-authored a Times Colonist opinion piece supporting Esquimalt council in its opposition to the McLoughlin Point site.
One co-author was experienced in municipal wastewater systems, another in resource recovery, myself in marine-pollution issues. Our opinions were based on sound engineering principles and accumulated experience. No new facts have emerged to change our opinions: McLoughlin is a bad site and the plan that incorporates it is a bad plan.
I was once told by a Capital Regional District engineer that "everyone [connected with the planning process] knows the plant should go at Macaulay Point but, unfortunately, the DND will not release the land." A Macaulay location would provide the space for a modern, expandable, energy-efficient integrated plant and eliminate the need for a double pipeline to Hartland; it would reduce the disruption of neighbourhoods during construction, the risk of spills and the cost (both financial and environmental) of construction and operation.
As the editorial noted, the release of lands surplus to DND needs would benefit Greater Victoria in many ways, and this is an important one. We have been told repeatedly that we must have land-based secondary treatment because new federal regulations require it. If the federal government deems this essential, and has committed a significant portion of the cost, it should also be willing to provide the necessary land.
© Copyright 2013