Environmental Approval Process
Last updated: Friday, July 30, 2021
Note: As required by the Environmental Approval process, established by Nova Scotia Environment & Climate Change (NSE), as part of the current Municipal Waste Facility Application process, notices of public consultation will be published in the Chronicle Herald (on July 31 and Aug. 4, 2021) and Masthead News (the August edition) allowing a 30-day period for comments to be submitted to the municipality. Comments may be submitted until Monday, Aug. 30, 2021.
As outlined by NSE, “The focus of the consultative process will be on the potential impacts of the project to the environment, and potential or proposed mitigation measures. The public engagement is intended to provide an additional tool for the identification of potential adverse effects to the environment which may result from the project.”
Residents or groups may submit their feedback by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by mail at Halifax Solid Waste, PO Box 1749, Halifax, NS B3J 3A5.
Organics Strategy Development
Since 2014, the municipality has been working towards developing a new organics management facility to process residential and commercial organics. As part of the planning steps, the conditions of the two existing composting facilities were assessed, a business case for a new facility was developed, and comprehensive public engagement was completed (September to December 2016) with the findings incorporated into the siting and requirements for the development of a new facility. The existing facilities are the Ragged Lake Facility located at 61 Evergreen Place in Goodwood; and the Dartmouth Facility located at 80 Gloria McCluskey Avenue in Burnside.
Site Selection and Zoning
In March 2018, Regional Council approved changes to the Regional Municipal Planning Strategy (RMPS), the Halifax Mainland Planning Strategy (MPS), as well as the Land Use By-law (LUB), to enable the replacement and expansion of the municipal composting facility located on Evergreen Place.
As part of the planning review process, public consultation was achieved by:
• Providing information, and seeking comments, through the municipal website [Shannon –
which page should we link to here? SYC?];
• Mailing notification letters to property owners within 1500 m of the site;
• Holding two public information meeting sessions on Thursday July 20, 2017;
• Holding a public hearing during the March 27, 2018 meeting of Regional Council, which provided further opportunity
Design, Build, Operate Agreement
In December 2020, Regional Council awarded RFP 19-060, which will see the establishment of a new composting facility to replace the two existing composting facilities and support the continued success of the municipal green cart program. The new facility will be located at 37 Evergreen Place, Goodwood, on the site of the current Ragged Lake Composting Facility.
Harbour City Renewables Partnership (HCR) has designed, built, and currently operates composting facilities in Hamilton (2006), Guelph (2011), and Calgary (2017). HCR’s design for the Halifax composting facility builds on an established technology and design.
Modern features for the proposed facility include:
• Compost Quality – The compost being produced at the new facility will meet the 2010 NS Environment Composting Facility Guidelines.
• Odour Control – The new facility design incorporates significant measures to mitigate odours, including the use of air locks/double doors. Air from inside the facility is scrubbed through a four-cell biofilter system which discharges air to a single 30 m tall exhaust stack – this means that odours from the facility cannot escape to the surrounding community.
• Energy Efficiency – The facility design includes LED lighting and will take advantage of the heat generated from the compost process, and rooftop rainwater collection.
• Water Negative Process – Unlike the existing composting facilities, the new facility will be water negative. This means any leachate produced is recycled through the process and does not have to be treated off-site. Storm water from the site is also collected and reused in the composting process and for fire protection. No process wastewater will be discharged from the facility.
• New Use of By-products – Ammonium sulphate, generated from the odour control system, can be marketed as a fertilizer product for the agriculture industry.
The new facility is anticipated to begin construction in 2021 and will take approximately two to three years to complete, following the additional public consultation. There will be no disruptions to the green cart program for residents during this transition project. Organics will continue to be processed at the two existing facilities until the new one is complete.
Community Integration Funding
As part of amendments to the Regional Municipal Planning Strategy (MPS), the Halifax MPS and the Halifax Mainland Land Use By-Law (LUB), to expand the property at Evergreen Place to allow for the development of a new facility, on April 25, 2017, Regional Council approved the establishment of a community integration fund. This included an allocation of $350,000 for the development of the Western Common Wilderness Common, $325,000 towards the Prospect Community Centre, and $325,000 to projects identified through community consultation. For the latter initiative, municipal staff plan to initiate the community consultation in fiscal year 2021/2022 to determine how to allocate the funding.