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Garbage filling Hartland faster than expected

Greater Victoria per capita waste generation is going up

The chair of the CRD’s environmental services committee is sounding alarm bells over the amount of waste being sent to Hartland Landfill.

Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins told the committee Wednesday that the waste volume going to the region’s landfill site has increased dramatically in the last two years.

The most recent data show waste being dumped this year is on track to measure 188,300 tonnes, a 13 per cent increase from 2021, Desjardins said.

“We’re very concerned with the trend. If the public isn’t aware of the trend, they should be because it will absolutely push us to have to expand Hartland Landfill and perhaps sooner than we thought,” she said in an interview.

Per-capita waste generation in the region this year is trending toward 430 kilograms, Desjardins said. That would dwarf last year’s 400-kg-per-person total and is nowhere near the ultimate goal of 125 kg per person and the interim goal of 250 kg per person by 2031.

“We are trending significantly in the wrong direction,” she said, noting staff reports suggest the building boom, demolition and busy real-estate sector have played a role in the increase.

The other factor is the closing of a small landfill site in Highlands.

Desjardins said they are hoping the numbers slow as higher interest rates take hold, the real estate market cools off and construction is completed on current projects.

If things don’t change, Hartland Landfill will have a shorter lifespan, Desjardins said.

“It’s got to go back to education — people have to start really looking at their garbage — there’s so much waste going on,” she said.