Consensus on sewage treatment remains out of reach

There seems to be little faith in the early decisions to bring sewage drainage pipes to Clover Point and Macaulay Point

Re: the editorial in the June 15 Saanich News, ‘Mayor shouldn’t turn a blind eye to sewage.’

Mayor Atwell offered to present and discuss a method of wastewater treatment that can occupy an extremely smaller land space when compared to other methods. Simply put, the Vertical-shaft Bioreactor (VBR) process works in a vertical orientation rather than horizontal, with comparably excellent results.

As with any applied technology, any long-established wastewater treatment engineering design company tends to be conservative, and rely upon the ongoing use of their selected menu of effective treatment processes, which they can demonstrate, for the task in hand, with many examples of similar plants.

Given that the consortium of project management and engineering companies for the overall wastewater treatment project for Greater Victoria was selected several years ago by the Capital Regional District, and that VBR is not promoted on their menu, the attempt by the chair of the CRD sewage treatment project to cry foul on Mayor Atwell’s offer, does start to smell a bit ‘off’.

The Saanich News appears to be equally flat-footed whilst attempting to describe the new rules of play, which would appear to be spreading the responsibilities for an overall solution between Victoria, Esquimalt and Colwood. The News made no mention in its editorial of Colwood, which up until recently, was a community straining at the bit to build its own treatment plant.

There seems to be little faith in the early decisions made by The City of Victoria’s “Founding Fathers” when drainage pipes conveyed sewerage to Clover Point and to Macaulay Point, and to subsequent land-use planning that failed to adequately draw attention to the extreme probability of sewage treatment facilities being constructed at each of those two locations.

Let’s hope Colwood has the third stage sewage treatment location firmly resolved in its community plan.

P.W. Bailey



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