Tertiary treatment would save money

Voters may hold some Capital Regional District directors accountable for the $60 million spent so far on an outdated secondary sewage plant that still does not exist.

In the meantime, the public is learning more about the advantages to tertiary sewage treatment from the RITE Plan.

Time and technology have marched on. For some CRD directors, time has stood still. Seaterra plans a single secondary treatment plant that may cost more than $2 billion when all piping and upgrading is calculated.

The CRD has dismissed the idea of several smaller tertiary plants spread throughout the region, saying it is too costly. Yet a cost/benefit analysis has not been done.

Richard Atwell and MLA Andrew Weaver inform us that tertiary treatment will remove the pharmaceuticals, bacteria-resistant “superbugs,” toxins and plastics that a secondary plant will not.

The tertiary waste water is pure enough to be sold to local farmers and golf courses, can be used to irrigate boulevards and be returned safely to surrounding wetlands.

Colwood now plans to opt out in favour of their own tertiary treatment. Their taxpayers will benefit from resource recovery and recyclable water.

The Seaterra plan has one guarantee: it will be so costly, it will eliminate any new projects far into the Capital Region’s future.  Note to CRD: Watch as Colwood builds its state-of-the-art tertiary plants first, at a fraction of the cost.

Art Bickerton



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