TRASH INCINERATOR RECONSIDERATION TUESDAY

I know, some of the staff have retired. I'll new pics eventually.

I know, some of the staff have retired. I’ll get new pics eventually.

Tuesday is the night that Council reconsiders their support of the waste incinerator for Allanport Road in General Committee, as promised by Councillor Paone at the August Council meeting. There will be a number of people speaking to it including, of course, the proponent. The case for No Burn Niagara is presented in an 11-frame PowerPoint presentation, with plenty of pictures, starting on document page 9 of the General Committee Agend. And, just to make sure we get all the rosy picture, the proponents have included a 13-page document (mostly words), starting on document page 24 of the same document. If you want to read them all, and the CAO’s report, just click here .

Most of the proponent’s info paints, as you may expect, an extremely optimistic picture of the whole process. Take it all as you will, but I find myself somewhat insulted by comments like “We want to see less waste, and fewer trucks moving waste across Ontario highways, not more.” I’d like to believe them but, unless this process somehow reduces the amount of garbage we all make, I have to wonder how it’s going to get to the plant: fly? And, if they run out of garbage to incinerate, is there a possibility they might start to import other area’s garbage to keep going?

The idea of greenhouses to use the steam and power generated there is a nice touch, although I don’t know how much that will use. Will there still be power left over to add to Ontario’s already over-supply of hydro power to sell to the U.S. on the cheap (less than we pay for it).

As an exercise, I looked up the exposure limits as per the NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety) Pocket Guide. Each substance that’s listed has two long-term exposure values (and sometimes short-term as well, but they don’t apply in a 24/7 exposure situation). The NIOSH numbers are listed as REL, which stands for Recommended Exposure Limits and the OSHA (Occupation Safety and Health Association) numbers listed as PEL, which is Permissible Exposure Level (by law). The OSHA numbers are the political decision that lawmakers decided upon. Both organizations are American but, unfortunately, those are the numbers largely used here (why re-invent the wheel, right?).

If you want to see what I dug up, in reference to the numbers the proponents provided, please see the spreadsheet: Stack Emissions – NIOSH.

All in all, it promises to be an interesting evening. And it will be even more interesting to see whether Council goes ahead a votes to rescind their support.

2 thoughts on “TRASH INCINERATOR RECONSIDERATION TUESDAY

  1. To: Mayor Luciani, Members of Council and CAO Fabiano and Clerk Donna Delvecchio:
    From: Ron Devereux,
    43 South Street, North,
    Port Robinson East
    Date: Tues. Sept. 6, 2016…12 NOON

    IN LIEU OF MAKING A VERBAL PRESENTATION TO COUNCIL TONIGHT, I AM SENDING YOU MY COMMENTS VIA THIS E-MAIL.

    Thank you for reconsidering rescinding your support re:the above project, at tonight’s Council meeting.
    Thank you for being responsive to this LOCAL issue that is considered extremely important by LOCAL residents.

    1. In a nutshell, the proponent only had one chance to make a good FIRST impression.
    I found the proponent’ FIRST presentation to Council, on Feb. 16, 2016, to be less than complete, and at times inaccurate, misleading, evasive, condescending and UNPROFESSIONAL!!!…a few examples!!

    2. The first problem was that the Community Relations Manager for the project (who introduced herself as Jessica Potts) emphasized that Regional Council had given their approval for the application earlier the same day…as if to hold that Regional approval by the higher level of local gov’t. over Council’s head as a stick.
    Should our municipality where the plant is proposed not been given FIRST consideration??
    3. She proceeded to state that she had 10 years of experience in municipal economic development in Niagara Falls & St. Catharines…then spun the wonderfulness of this project by saying, “imagine Niagara as the power peninsula “. How lame is that?…when we know that this has been the Hydroelectric power peninsula for 111 years…since 1905!! Niagara currently generates 2000 megawatts of power…this project proposes to generate 1/100 the of that amount…20 megawatts.
    4. She went on to say that the location for the project “is on Allanport Road with NO RESIDENTIAL AROUND IT”. Within a RADIUS OF 5 km. of this location are the residential areas of Port Robinson East and West, Allanburg, Thorold South, Rolling Meadows subdivision, most of urban Thorold including Confederation Heights, the proposed Port Robinson West subdivision, a portion of north-east Welland and portions of new subdivisions in Niagara Falls West.
    She also stated that the plant would operate on “proven thermal technology”. However no evidence was presented of their actual operating track-record…and we now know this statement to be FALSE, based on the Durham Region experience.

    5. Following her overview, Council Members were given the opportunity to ask questions of the DEVELOPMENT REP…who was introduced as Dragan Racic.
    Councillor Fred Neale who was on Council in the 1990’s when a previous incineration project was proposed, and rejected, asked specifically about EMISSIONS from the plant.
    Dragen downplayed the environmental issues by stating that the plant uses a “completely closed burning system to insure that nothing goes out the stack.” When Councillor Neale pressed Dragen on the “no emissions” comment, Dragen doubled-down, re-emphasizing that there were “no emissions!”

    At that point, the question was going through my head, ” Then, why do you need a stack?”

    6. Councillor Sergio Paone (who is a Chemistry Professor at Brock University) then proceeded to press Dragan on details of the burning process. Councillor Paone said, “I take issue with no emissions” specifically mentioning incinerator emissions of mercury, dioxins and furans which are known to cause cancer. Dragan then, backtracked on his previous statement about no emissions, jokingly stating “ If I said no emissions before, I apologize. I didn’t hear myself saying it. (REALLY??) It’s really low emissions. Yes, you are right there are no ZERO emissions” . No information about emissions was included in the Info. Pkg given to Council… which Dragan then said he would subsequently provide. Also, no map was included to show the actual location of the property… 1789 Allanport Road…west of the Clean Harbours site.

    KUDOS to Councillors NEALE, PAONE for questioning the issue of no emissions!

    7. To summarize the rest of the meeting, Dragan made several references to various incinerator plants and emission standards around the world. Specifically, he referenced the Ontario plant in Durham Region built by COVANTA which he stated “is well-known for their advanced technology” …which we now know is severely problematic. And, in recent weeks, we have been given proven evidence, that when these operational problems arise, the Provincial Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change is incapable/not willing to deal with them in a responsible and timely manner to protect its citizens.

    To me, there are NO acceptable standards for knowingly-emitting carcinogens across the lands of the Niagara Region and into our vast system of Great Lakes waterways.

    There are many other unanswered questions about this Allanburg project like odour control of raw garbage, how much is burned a day, how many truckloads, what infrastructure improvements will be needed, how far are the emitted toxins carried by the wind, etc. With this proponent, if we don’t know the right questions to ask, we do not get the full disclosure of information from him.

    8. To check out the dirty secrets of on the disastrous “Clean Energy Act” in Ontario, check out this website: http://www.windontario.ca/
    So-called clean energy is neither green nor clean NOR AFFORDABLE!!

    9. In his current written submission to be discussed at tonight’s meeting, it is amazing how the proponent uses all the “environmental” jargon /buzz words to glamorize this ridiculous project…even renaming it as “The Tesla Institute RDII Inc.” But. of course, it is all made possible due to Provincial and Federal government decisions which encourage this kind of nonsensical wasteful subsidization of inefficient schemes…always at taxpayers expense. Witness the media headlines this past week: “TAXES NEED TO COME DOWN”..Canadians are spending almost half of their income on taxes. It’s more than we’re spending on the basic necessities of life – food, shelter and clothes.There’s something seriously wrong with society when the people are working more for the government than they are their own families. Source: http://www.torontosun.com/2016/08/23/taxes-need-to-come-down.
    ALSO, Ontarians see higher hydro bills as consumption comes down. People struggling to pay energy bills. Ontario electricity has never been cheaper, but bills have never been higher. SOURCE:http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-hydro-rates-1.3669731

    10. The proponent paints such a rosy picture of how great this project is, for the advancement of civilization.
    If that is the case, you would think that there would be municipalities lined up for miles to be a part of this blessing-on-humanity. Yet we see the proponent literally BEGGING for a place…THOROLD… to built this disaster!! If it sounds too good to be true…IT ALWAYS IS!!
    When you put lipstick on an incinerator, it is still an incinerator!! And what guarantees are there that he would follow-through and operate at a high level of quality, any of the ancillary, lipstick operations that he is promising??
    THOROLD AND PORT ROBINSON AND ALLANBURG…BEWARE!!

    11. You, as our Council, and we, as Thorold Citizens, are wasting our collective time…and flirting with financial disaster (eg. tipping fees and penalties for inability to supply enough waste, etc.) in spending any more time toward considering any support of/approvals to this project.

    I hope you agree and will vote accordingly tonight.

    THANKS for reading this information!!
    I will definitely be at the meeting tonight!

    Like

  2. Thanks Tony for always keeping on top of LOCAL issues that are considered extremely important by LOCAL residents. It is amazing how the proponent uses all the “environmental” jargon /buzz words to glamorize this ridiculous project…but. of course, it is all made possible due to Provincial and Federal government decisions which encourage this kind of nonsensical wasteful subsidization of inefficient schemes…always at taxpayers expense. Witness the media headlines this past week: ” TAXES NEED TO COME DOWN”..Canadians are spending almost half of their income on taxes. It’s more than we’re spending on the basic necessities of life – food, shelter and clothes.
    There’s something seriously wrong with society when the people are working more for the government than they are their own families. Source: http://www.torontosun.com/2016/08/23/taxes-need-to-come-down. ALSO, Ontarians see higher hydro bills as consumption comes down. People struggling to pay energy bills. Ontario electricity has never been cheaper, but bills have never been higher. SOURCE: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-hydro-rates-1.3669731 I will definitely be at the meeting. The proponent paints such a rosy picture of how great this project is, figuratively, for the advancement of civilization. If that is the case, you would think that there would be municipalities lined up for miles to be a part of this blessing on humanity. Yet we see the proponent literally BEGGING for a place…THOROLD… to built this disaster!! If it sounds too good to be true…IT ALWAYS IS!! THOROLD AND PORT ROBINSON AND ALLANBURG…BEWARE!!

    Like

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