This landfill mining initiative does not relate to the IDOL landfill (it only applies to the sites under the Region of Durham jurisdiction), but is interesting news as it involves taking steps to repurpose landfills for recreational use in the Region.
Durham to start landfill mining by 2014
By Jillian Follert
Goal is to convert garbage dumps into recreation spots
September 27, 2012
Oshawa This Week
The plan comes at a time when many incineration opponents are questioning whether there will be enough garbage to feed the new Clarington energy-from-waste facility -- especially as Durham moves towards a target of 70-per cent waste diversion.
Mirka Januszkiewicz, the Region's director of waste management, says landfill mining will "close the loop" by turning landfills into usable community space and sending excavated waste to the incinerator.
In many communities, mining is done to create more space in jam-packed landfill sites, but Durham is pursuing the idea to repurpose the sites.
"The hope is that we can turn the landfills into recreation properties," Ms. Januszkiewicz says. "We are not doing this to create more space in the landfill, we are doing this to clean it up."
When the Region of Durham was established in 1974, seven municipal landfills came under its jurisdiction.
The plan is to start mining with the smallest one -- Cartwright landfill, located in Blackstock.
Regional council approved the idea in principle last year.
The procurement process for a contractor is expected to start by fall 2013 with mining slated to begin by late 2014 or early 2015.
If the Cartwright site is a success, staff plans to continue with the Scott landfill in Uxbridge.
The Region is currently spending about $150,000 a year to maintain the seven landfills under its care, including water sampling and seepage repairs.
The cost of mining the Cartwright landfill is estimated at $390,000.
Staff said the Region's larger landfills would likely be more expensive, but could also produce more recyclable metal which offsets the price tag.