Communities from 100 Mile House and north will gather virtually on Oct. 12 and 13 to discuss solid waste management.
The Northern B.C. Solid Waste Management Forum is being organized by the North Central Local Government Association (NCLGA).
It will be the first regional conference in Northern B.C. to bring together local elected officials, industry officials and stewardship leaders to discuss challenges and solutions for managing and reducing solid waste in the region.
“I’m on a panel where we will be presenting what various local governments are doing in regards with solid waste,” said Cariboo Regional District (CRD) Area G director Al Richmond after the regular board meeting held Friday, Sept. 10. “It’s mostly regional districts that are in charge of solid waste management plans, that’s how the province set it up.”
The CRD has completed a public survey and will be releasing the results once the board has seen it.
READ MORE: CRD seeks input on solid waste plan
Richmond said the region has an active public advisory committee on solid waste management planning, which he chairs, that meets once a month to discuss issues and bring ideas forward to the CRD.
“We are midway in doing our review of solid waste management plan, we had to do public consultation and we will be doing more. We will be presenting what we’ve heard from people and where we envision us going.”
To date the committee has heard concerns about illegal dumping, tipping fees, need for more recycling and interest in composting.
“By sharing this information with our NCLGA members will be able to gather what they are hearing from their people. I think collectively the province needs to hear from us,” Richmond said, noting solid waste is the biggest cost of the CRD budget. “We need to find ways to reduce costs, but reducing the use we have of items that are recyclable to get them out of the landfills.”
Richmond said while locally the number of people who filled out the survey for the CRD was not as high as last time, the public committee has been very active and engaged.
“I’ve been impressed by the membership we have from North Cariboo, Central Cariboo and South Cariboo. It’s been really rewarding to work with those folks. They put time and effort into it.”
Virtual meetings have been scheduled for 4:30 p.m. so people can still attend work beforehand.
There are 23 members on the committee who have been open to learning and exchanging ideas, Richmond added. “It’s rewarding to have a group that’s really passionate about solid waste.”