CIG rules out mining the dump

| 19/09/2016 | 30 Comments

(CNS): The government has released the long-awaited outline business case setting out the options and costs for the future of waste-management on all three Cayman Islands, though the premier has already stated that his government had ruled out mining the dump. Only the first step in a long road to addressing the George Town landfill (a.k.a. Mount Trashmore), the document recommends a public-private partnership to create a national solution based on reuse, recycling and waste-to-energy, despite the decision not to dig out the existing rubbish pile.

Almost a year after government published its National Waste-Management Strategy, it has now made public the outline business case (OBC) which examines the options and the cost to create a modern national waste system. Premier Alden McLaughlin, who has responsibility for environmental health, acknowledged that the whole process is moving slowly.

“If you ask me, do I wish we could have gotten to this phase sooner, the answer would be yes, but we have dutifully followed the steps required by the framework for fiscal responsibility, which mirrors the UK Treasury’s Green Book for managing projects such as this. The process may seem long, but it is sure and will ensure we have the best, most viable solution,” he said.

“For those who have been saying ‘fix the dump’, I will point out again that this is what this project is about,” McLaughlin stated in a press release Monday, as he announced the publication of the OBC, which was undertaken by consultants KPMG and waste experts Amec Foster Wheeler.

“But it goes beyond fixing a dump to providing a long-term solution of waste-management needs of all three Cayman Islands,” he said. “In the interim, we have dramatically improved the operations at the current landfill by re-establishing proper practices and have spent millions of dollars on new equipment, including a state-of-the-art compactor and garbage trucks. We have also increased our focus on recycling, including old tyres, and will soon be moving towards composting.”

The OBC pointed to over $100 million start-up costs for a waste-to-energy facility, the land and other elements needed to support the new system. But operational costs are estimated to be about CI$538 million over the 25 years in a PPP arrangement. Officials said the costs of a “status quo-type system of just landfilling waste on the islands” was expected to cost about $418 million over a 25-year period.

The new model, which would greatly reduce the waste that would go into a landfill, would be $4.8 million per year more than the public model, and government will be looking for a partner who will also invest in the project.

Although government has pointed to the waste pyramid as informing its policy, it is clear that the current administration is still wedded to a significant waste-to energy component, which is very low on the pyramid score, just above dumping. But the PPM has stated that while waste-to-energy is going to be central, a policy decision has been made to exclude mining of waste.

“The potential of long-term nuisance conditions from mining, such as odours, outweigh the benefit of gaining back the small area of landfill space,” the government stated. “While financial information regarding the mining of waste at the George Town landfill is addressed in the draft OBC document, it is no longer under consideration for inclusion in the ISWMS project, and the final OBC will reflect this.”

According to the OBC, the ultimate aim is to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill by up to 95% and the project includes costing for the eventual remediation and closing of the three existing unlined landfills

It also includes waste reduction measures, the reuse and refurbishment of bulky waste, waste electrical and electronic equipment, community recycling depots and household waste recycling centre facilities, transfer and bulking facilities, the composting of yard/garden waste, the treatment of residual waste in a waste to energy facility, closing the Sister Islands landfills and sending waste to Grand Cayman for processing, the possible introduction of kerbside yard and garden waste collection and dry recyclable by 2020.

The public can learn more about the outline business case recommendations at open house sessions at the Government Administration Building on Grand Cayman on 4 October from 5-7pm, at the National Trust House on Little Cayman on 5 October from 11.30am to 1.30pm, and at the Aston Rutty Civic Centre on Cayman Brac on 5 October from 5-7 pm.

A questionnaire will be provided at the open house sessions and is being set up on the Ministry of Health website Submissions about the document should be made by 7 October.

See the OBC in the CNS Library

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Category: Environmental Health, Health

Comments (30)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Sadly this is just history repeating itself. The PPM (or more correctly a certain minister who is now an independent) played around with this 10 years ago and came up with a similar load of BS.

    Bottom line – this is the ‘what’s in it for me?’ mentality prevailing again. Nobody responsible for sorting a mess like this out is going to do anything until they can see a way to cash in on it. Remember the Matrix scrap metal contract?

    And Alden says these islands aren’t corrupt!

  2. Anonymous says:

    No mining because it will stink? What, unlike now?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Soon begin composting? Bro it’s 2016!

  4. Anon says:

    Your article forgot something: CIG Also Rules Out Doing Something About the Dump.

  5. Anonymous says:

    We just built several miles of highway roads with the purchase of marl fill some 8 to 10 feet deep in some places.This is right next to the dump.
    The materials on the dump are all generously mixed with marl. With proper layering and compacting this material could have been used as fill for the highway with an added layer of 3 feet of marl, all capped with barbergreen to seal in any scent.
    This is how landfills are reclaimed worldwide by capping so why not kill two birds with one stone.
    A liner laid down under the fill would contain any leaching unlike what is hapening now.
    This utilization of the dump materials would have likely reduced the hight of the pile to mormal ground level and we could have capped what was left and started over somewhere else with proper planning and recycleing.

    • Anonymous says:

      It’s obvious that the posters can’t comprehend or are simply unwilling to understand this model approach by Government. This is another historic achievement and now we finally have a well thoughtout solution. Stop this rubbish about Dart fixing the dump in 6 mths.

      • Diogenes says:

        You are right. 6 months is rubbish. He offered to fix it 4 years ago – it would have already be done by now!

        Instead we get to watch the PPM trying to tell BT voters that they have no intention of starting a new dump in BT, whilst telling GT voters that they will start a new dump site – but after the election and without saying where. Well, the old saying is that you can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people for some of the time but …4 years on its getting a bit difficult to persuade either group of voters that you can be trusted.

        • Anonymous says:

          Dart was part of a competitive bidding process, they came 7th out of 10, largely becuase they had no dump management experience, although I’m sure tehy would have got some. The winner was engaged to start work but the project cancelled by the previous government, or one man.

  6. Anonymous says:

    When will the people realize that this issue is beyond the skill level of this government? Face it they do not know how or what to do with the dump.
    You will continue to get double talk and studies and nothing else.
    Turn it over to Dart and a hard core plan would be done in 6 months.
    It is the difference between being elected at the trough and management by objectives.

  7. Sharkey says:

    This sounds like let’s keep kicking the can down the road and let’s get a multi millions dollars dump budget going. The Government need to fix the dump because the longer they wait , the more it would cost fiancialy and environmentally and health wise .

  8. Anonymous says:

    wow…thanks for nothing ppm…spending 3 years to tell us what we already know….
    bottom line is…you turned down a free solution ot the gt landfill….all for the sake of a votes from bodden town nimby’s……

    • Anonymous says:

      Except it wasn’t free and it wasn’t a solution. Just another hole in the ground somewhere else. Nothing more.

      • Diogenes says:

        Except it was free. And it was a lined hole, unlike the existing one. And it included a plan for capping the current dump, and a barrier to the current leachate seeping into the sound. And the new “hole” site had areas for composting and separation of recyclable materials. But hey, agree it doesnt compare with your magic wand solution where all the waste in future is simply going to disappear, and the existing dump with it, and all for free.

      • Anonymous says:

        Land donation, new east-west arterial highway extension, three lined pads, recycling sort facilities, other buildings and int’l waste mgmt expertise…plus remediation and capping of existing GT dump that continues beyond capacity and operating lifespan while sending untreated leachate into the North Sound. That offer was 4 yrs ago.

        • Anonymous says:

          It’s amazing how this lie has taken root. Reality: 3 holes in ground. No other facilities. No other waste management solutions. In exchange for $100’s of millions worth of real estate & tax concessions. Proposal in summary: move the problem away from the rich people and literally dump it on the poor people.

      • Anonymous says:

        So correct, not to sure why these simpletons don’t realize that fact, the “solution” was a lined peace of land to put trash, it was up to government to build and maintain the so called waste management facility, we all know how that ended up.. AKA Mount Transmore

        • Stig Of The Dump says:

          Worth educating yourself. I dare you. Lots of reading though but there are some pictures for you.

          • Anonymous says:

            Propaganda, aimed at convincing the feeble-minded (like you).

            • Stig Of The Dump says:

              The documents are all there muppet, they are very real. More than one offer has been on the table but our politicians know best. Now go crawl back in to your Bodden Town cesspool and start educating yourself.

              • Anonymous says:

                Driftwood, heh!

              • Anonymous says:

                Registrant Name: Dart Realty (Cayman) Ltd

                It even says it on the front page.

                Propaganda put up by a vested interest.

                I do hope they are not paying you Stig for your cretinous ramblings.

          • Dis Lil Light says:

            Education is key to a successful economy and Country; needless to say we have far too much ignorant and incompetent persons in Authority who like the sound of their own voice too much! Progress and Cayman do not go hand in hand.

            If Bermuda can sort their waste management issues for 20Million why cant we for 20-50 Million; Bermuda is not that much smaller than us but by a few miles. So…..what’s the deal here?

            DART offered to buy our dump from us for CI$60Million…..

            When will Caymanians see that it’s Caymanians preventing progress and stability for our economy. We are in DEBT, up to our necks and yet we continue on the same road of unnecessary spending and it gets us no-where!

            I am 35 years old, went through the public education system my entire life and all the elected leaders ever told us growing up was that “WE are the future”; well excuse me for seeing this for what it was then and still is now, a FARCE!

            All elected leaders for the past 30 years have done is lie to the voting populous, line their personal pockets, wheel and deal, steal from the public purse, distract and deflect from the real issues plaguing our Country and our people. They are still doing these same things today; look at the issue regarding the LGBT rights. While I understand some views regarding this, let’s be honest; LGBT rights is something to address, however it is not a major issuing plaguing our Country. So what do our elected leaders do, use is as a ploy to gain votes and to cause another distraction from the issues that are of real importance.

            Well, it has worked for the last 40+ years and still going strong.

            I personally choose to exercise my right NOT to vote for ANY of you going forward.

            You want my vote, you better work for it!


  9. Pure Rubbish says:

    More excuses from the PPM who claimed to have a solution besides “No Dump in BT” when they campaigned in 2013.

    This is another example of failure by the PPM to keep a key campaign promise. The OBC like the all the other reports; it states what has been known for the last thirty years. That is not progressive on any scale and is an indictment on the current crop of politicians, the Ministry of Health and DEH management.

  10. Promises Promises says:

    Osbourne Bodden, Alva Suckoo, Anthony Eden, Wayne Panton, Alan Beiner, Gregg Anderson, Charles Clifford, Arlene Whittaker and others all had the answers. I’m sure they are more than willing to help you Alden.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Neglecting the dump for the past 4 years is the PPM’s ultimate failure which overshadows anything positive they’ve accomplished. For this reason I’m out. Sorry PPM you’ll never get another vote from me.

  12. People For A Dump Free G.T. says:

    Fix the damn dump Alden!

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