News, Post

Stay away from the sea water at these locations

From Victoria News via Capital Daily (reproduced here due to health hazards):

The Capital Regional District is advising residents to temporarily avoid swimming in multiple shorelines for the next couple of days.

Construction on the Macaulay Point pump station will require wastewater to be discharged from the short outfall on June 22. People are asked to avoid entering the water as the wastewater may pose a health risk.

Read More…


Province invites input on sewage sludge treatment


The following information is posted for your information and individual participation. The Cadboro Bay Residents Association takes no position on this matter:

From the Sewage Treatment Action Group:

Re: Opportunity For Public Input On Production, Distribution, Sale, Storage, Use, And Land Application Of Biosolids. 

The Province is inviting British Columbians to review and provide feedback on a Policy Intentions Paper for the BC Organic Matter Recycling Regulation (OMRR), which includes new requirements for managing the use of biosolids (sewage sludge). We believe these decisions affect all of us.


The OMRR Policy Intentions Paper states that sewage sludge is a valuable resource, as well as concluding that there is a need to update the OMRR to reflect advances in science and present day practices, and to ensure that the regulation remains protective of human health and the environment. Page 7 of the Policy Intentions Paper outlines a proposed addition of new standards:

The OMRR sets out requirements for production and use of compost, biosolids and biosolids growing medium. The regulation also includes process and quality criteria and distribution requirements.

The ministry will ensure that standards reflect up-to date science and are protective of human health and the environment. The ministry will work closely with Ministry of Health in revising the standards.

In addition to other standards under consideration, the ministry proposes to add chromium and copper maximum allowable standards to Class A biosolids.

This ministry is also considering addition of standards for other substances of concern not currently in the OMRR, including:

Emerging substances of concern or ESOCs: personal care products, pharmaceuticals, flame retardants, and endocrine disrupting compounds; and

Legacy organics: dioxins, furans, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), phenols and phthalates.

Currently, no decision has been made on what to do with the sewage sludge the CRD wastewater plan will produce other than to stock pile it at the Hartland Landfill. Considering that disposing of sewage sludge in forests and on agricultural land is an accepted practice elsewhere in BC (including Vancouver Island) the risk of land application becoming a solution for the CRD is very real.

Many individuals and organizations have an interest in an updated regulatory regime for sewage sludge, given that land application of sewage sludge is unlikely to be a safe method of disposal, and that there are emerging technologies focused on resource recovery that provide viable alternatives.

It is important to provide the Province with sufficient input on developing clear guidance for local governments, as well as compost and biosolids producers, on how to dispose of organic material while protecting soil quality and drinking water sources.

Your participation in the following is therefore encouraged:

1.    Encourage your Board to become educated on the negative and cumulative impacts of the land application of sewage sludge.
2.    Provide your Association’s feedback on the OMRR Policy Intentions Paper at the link below, noting that the opportunity for public comments ends December 2nd, 2016

3. Email the Province expressing your concern around current practices in BC:

      4. Share this call to action with others.

Please read (and feel free to use) the STAG letter sent to the Province (attached below).
Sewage Treatment Action Group
Victoria, B.C.

Since its inception in 2007, the Sewage Treatment Action Group (STAG) has consistently advocated for sewage treatment practices that stand to fulfill our social, financial and environmental goals and responsibilities, now and for future generations.

A 2011 decision banning the land application of biosolids in the CRD remains in place despite significant efforts in 2013 to see the ban overturned.

List of Resources and Documents for Joint Meeting of the Environmental Sustainability, Core Area Liquid Waste Committee, Solid Waste Advisory Committee, and Saanich Peninsula Wastewater Commission, May 25th, 2011.

Scientists react to BC Govt’s recent review of land application of biosolids.


Community Forum on Sewage Treatment

Wednesday, February 17, 2016, 7-9 pm 
at Cadboro Bay United Church, 2625 Arbutus Rd, Saanich, BC

This is your opportunity to hear simple commonsense talk from experts and have your questions answered.

Panel and Discussion Moderator: Ian Jessop


  • Richard Atwell – Mayor of Saanich, Vice-Chair of the CRD’s Core Area Liquid Waste Management Committee and of the Integrated Resource Management Task Force.
  • Brian Grover – Retired civil engineer with postgraduate degrees in water resources engineering and business administration and a long history on international infrastructure projects, including CIDA and World Bank.
  • John Farquharson – John’s track record in public engagement includes chairing the steering committees for the Gonzales Neighbourhood plan and the City of Victoria’s Greenway’s Plan.
  • Bryan Gilbert – Citizen expert on the CRD sewage project, Brian is a spokesperson for the RITE Plan, and enjoys helping people make sense of the mess.
  • Oscar Regier – Retired civil engineer with 40 years of experience in the evaluation, design and construction of municipal infrastructure including potable water, stormwater, and wastewater conveyance and treatment. Oscar was the prime consultant project manager for the design of civil works and the waste water treatment plant at Dockside Green

Sewage treatment: update

CBRA Director and Sewage Treatment Liaison Bill Dancer reports: 

Residents with an interest in the Sewage Project should go to the CRD’s Core Area Liquid Wastewater Management Committee Agenda for the 9th September and there, in the Agenda and its many attachments, you will find information on how the project will proceed now that decisions made will have tangible results. Mandates for more recent Committees involved form the major part of the September 9th Agenda.


Summary of meeting of Eastside & CALWMC, July 29.

Bill Dancer reports: 

Here is a brief summary of events at the meeting between the Eastside Committee and the Core Area Liquid Waste Management Committee (CALWMC) on July 29th. I attended both and David (Langley) the 29th meeting only.

On the 28th July, after lengthy robust discussion, the Eastside Committee came up with a short list of sites to forward to the CALWMC as possible sites for inclusion in a Distributive Sewage Treatment System. For our area,  this included a site in the Shelbourne/Gordon Head area with an outfall to Haro Strait.

The CALWMC meeting of the 29th July started at 11:25, preceded by a long in camera session. At the public meeting both East and Westside short lists of possible sites for Distributive sites wer,e debated and agreed.

The Terms of Reference for the Technical Oversight Committee were discussed, and essentially stated that the shortlisted sites would be the primary focus, but that the Oversight Panel would be provided with all work to date. They could also advise on any site not within the shortlist which may provide for a more and less costly solution. In this process it was made clear that a full range of system options should be considered, and that municipal staff involved in waste water should be consulted.

Additionally, the Oversight Panel would be asked to look to private industry for a full range of systems available for sewage treatment.

Other items of note for the Public: On September 17, Architect Bruce Hayden will give a talk on what a sewage site could look like ( nowhere was given but will no doubt be published later). It would appear that Technical and Costing will be completed in October, however, this may be an optimistic forecast, given what is required in these areas. The next Eastside and CALWMC meetings slated for mid-August should shed more light on the timeline.


Saanich Council Meeting on sewage treatment options

CBRA director Bill Dancer reports on the outcome of the Council meeting of July 20, 2015:  

  1. Watkiss Way Sewage Treatment Strategy. This concerned a parcel of privately owned  land on Watkiss Way. At the 22nd June Saanich Council Meeting a motion to forward this parcel of land to the CRD for consideration as a site for the planned treatment system was defeated by a 4 to 5 margin. At this meeting the same request was made and following close to 20 inputs by the public both for and against the request and discussion by council members the motion to forward to CRD was again defeated by the same 4 to 5 margin.
  2. The CRD had asked Saanich Council to allow Sewage Pump Stations sites in the area be included for consideration as feasible sites  for the sewage system. This request in the form of a motion was passed unanimously after a short discussion.
  3. The Director of Engineering had asked to know if any site should be forwarded to the Eastside Committee for consideration as a feasible site for consideration as a site for the sewage system (only one site, on Interurban, was mentioned). After discussion, the motion to forward the Interurban site was defeated by a 3 to 6 margin.

Eric spoke in favour of Item #1, and with regard to Item #2 advised that the Penrhyn Pump Station would not be a suitable site.


Outcomes of July 15th Eastside Wastewater Committee Meeting

Bill Dancer, the CBRA’s representative at the Eastside Wastewater Committee, reports on the salient recommendations emerging from the meeting held in the afternoon of July 15, 2015:  

  1. That a centralised system in the Rock Bay area—serving just the Eastside or both Eastside and Westside—be forwarded to the Core Area Liquid Wastewater Management (CALWMC) for further exploration. 
  2. Since public consultation did not identify a clear choice, that Urban Systems reprioritize all sites that are coded yellow or green before the 29th July (date of the next CALWMC meeting)—which in Cadboro Bay would include UVic property in an area between Finnerty and Gordon Head Roads and Queen Alexandra’s Trust Property—to come up with sites for a distributive system. 
  3. That the sites coded red be excluded for consideration (which in our area includes the Haro Woods sites). 
  4. That all Pump Station sites be considered as distributed system sites. 
  5. That the CALWMC include anaerobic digestion & gasification, and resource recovery/cost recovery potential when costing the subsequent secondary and tertiary treatment. 
  6. That Coast Guard, Ogden Point and Banfield Park sites be considered as sites for the distributive system only.

Other points raised: 

  • The public (and Eastside committee members) want full technical and life cycle costing information before they are next asked for input. 
  • Frequent updates on progress should be provided online (e.g., weekly). 
  • Statistics show that the overwhelming participation was by older people (over 44), and that innovative outreach information and educational programs should be created to involve the younger population.

Things to look for in future:

  • Date of the next Eastside Committee Meeting: sometime before the 29th July. 
  • Compare the Eastside’s approach to that of the Westside—notably on the issue of cost—by examining the Westside Wastewater Committee website.

Your input on Eastside sewage treatment options: final opp.

On Wednesday, June 24th, Eastside and Westside Select Committees held a Public Meeting at the Delta Inn Victoria, at which each group showed a number of options derived from all the public input to date.
The Eastside provided six options, and the Westside eight options—all of which were based on siting, costs and community considerations. The purpose of displaying the options was to gauge the opinion of the approximately 300 or so people who attended—a small minority of whom only were newbies—on which they would favour, which they would want to change. 

For the Eastside options, a new and much more comprehensive Ethelo Decisions survey is now available online for people to have their say. The results of this survey will be an important factor in the deliberations of the expert committee to be formed later this year to verify the technical and cost aspects.
All the relevant information on the Eastside options is set out by going to the Eastside Community Dialogues page run by the survey company Ethelo Decisions. 
The survey is something you can complete and return to at any time, should you change your mind about something, until the closing date of July 13. 

Please add your voice: this is the last chance for public input before the final decisions are made. 


Watkiss Way Waste Management & Agricultural Strategy


A proposal put forward by McElhanney Consulting Services suggests that the optimal solution to sewage treatment in the CRD is a single-site solution on Watkiss Way, which would eliminate the need for a dual pipeline corridor between separate facilities and optimize the use of existing collection systems. 

The proposal, encapsulated in a PDF presentation, has been forwarded to Saanich Council by the CBRA Board, with the following notice:

The Cadboro Bay Residents Association believes that this proposal should be considered as a serious contender and should be treated by CALWMC in that manner.
We believe it is the only single plant site brought forward to replace McLoughlin Point.

Yours Truly

Eric Dahli, Chair

Cadboro Bay Residents Association


Outcome of first Eastside Community Dialogue meetings


Bill Dancer, one of the new members of the CBRA board of directors, reports  from the Eastside Community Dialogue meetings of May 30 and 31:

Public input was sought to whittle down the 38 specific sites for sewage treatment that had been forwarded by the municipalities of Victoria, Oak Bay and Saanich, to identify other perspective sites, and to comment on the municipalities’ considerations with regard to the sites. The manner of wastewater treatment and associated considerations
was also involved.

Approximately 250 individuals attended either one or both meetings, and clarifications of the definition of criteria being Met, Not met, Not fully met and Partially met helped assuage initial concerns about their meaning. In addition, the following resolutions were agreed: 

  1. The sewage treatment system should be distributed, rather than one large plant
  2. Treatment should be full tertiary
    treatment, but cost-effective—if it cannot be cost-effective, the system should be built so as to be modifiable to full tertiary at a future date. 
  3. The design of treatment plants must be neighbourhood-friendly and a positive contributor to their surroundings. 
  4. If the site is in a public space (e.g. apark), it must ensure continuing access to the park. 
  5. Treed areas must not be used—only brown-earth spaces, particularly if one large plant involved. 
  6. University of
    Victoria should be involved. 
  7. Full-life cycle costs must be provided.

Sites that appeared to most favoured were
Clover Point; Saanich Public Works Yard (Borden Street); Victoria Public Works
Yard; Rock Bay area; and the UVic campus.

The Core Area Wastewater Management
Committee meeting of the 10th June included a request to CRD staff
for a report on requirements to purchase or lease privately owned land. 

At the Eastside Community meeting held at
the Belfry Theatre on June 10,  the results of the May 30/31 Dialogues were presented. Sites were classified as being either Publicly Unacceptable,
Possibly acceptable with conditions, or Publicly Acceptable. Acceptable sites were: Coast Guard Base (Huron Street); BC Hydro site; Transport Canada site; private
sites in Rock Bay; Clover Point; Victoria Public Works Yard; and UVic campus
area (both sides of MacKenzie Avenue, from Finnerty Road junction to a point
adjacent to Fire Station 3).

Amongst the Publicly Unacceptable sites: the two Haro Woods sites. In addition, the area covering mainly Queen Alexandra’s Trust
lands was rated possibly acceptable with conditions.

For further information, please email Bill Dancer