New septage receiving ponds are being constructed for the South Country after the old sites were closed down in 2014.
The B.C. Government had deemed the previous septage receiving ponds unsuitable for continued operations in 2014, and the search for a new location began.
“Ten different potential sites were considered by our consultants and in 2016, the preferred site on Kikomun Road was identified and supported by the Board due to a number of factors including: the suitability of soils, lack of surface water sources such as streams, limited recreation use in the area, distance from residences, access to onsite power,” said Stan Doehle, RDEK Director for Electoral Area B.
The RDEK then proceeded with an approval process once the preferred site was identified. Applying to a Crown land tenure, and beginning consultations with the Plan Monitoring Advisory Committee and First Nations, the process also included public advertisement of the proposed project.
“We recognize the importance of ensuring the water sources in the region are protected and the ponds have been designed with strict standards and ongoing monitoring to ensure they are environmentally sound in their operations,” added Doehle.
Seeing as most residences in Area B are on septic tanks, and with 18 large campgrounds for recreational use, there is a significant volume of septage. Currently, septage haulers are moving the waste to Wasa, increasing costs to residents and business owners because of the service.
“We need a local solution to deal with septage in our area. These new ponds provide a safe, affordable and accessible option,” said Doehle.
Fully lined, four wells will be drilled at the site and tested every quarter to ensure there isn’t any leakage. As well, the site will be fully fenced.
“This project has been a long time in the making and I’m pleased to see it moving forward.”
“A great deal of work and thought has gone into the design of these ponds to ensure they meet modern standards and provide an environmentally responsible option for dealing with the large volume of material generated in our area.”
The RDEK said construction of the new septage receiving ponds should be completed by mid-October.