Proposed permanent waste repository in Prince Edward County

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An expansion of the Household and Electronic Waste Depot is proposed in Prince Edward County.

Quinte Waste Solutions Operations Coordinator Ron Rae and Transition Manager Dan Miller made a presentation at the regular board meeting Tuesday evening.

They propose that the Household and Electronic Waste (HEW) program be extended in the municipality in a permanent form.

Currently, county residents attend four mobile events per year and have the option of traveling to the Belleville depot.

Last year, the HEW program received 384 tons of materials while serving 13,384 residents. This included being closed for the entire month of January, three days in February, and no moving events until June.

Rae noted that funding is moving away from mobile events and towards physical collection sites more and said that if there was a consistent site open, people would go.

Quinte Waste Solutions is considering what they call the medium option, with a light option being mobile events and a heavy option being a Belleville-like depot.

Rae says the medium option gives the county the flexibility to scale up or down.

Moving mobile events to a permanent location would mean residents would have access to the HEW depot for 420 hours if the site were to be open from May to September, compared to 36 hours with the four mobile events.

Should the staff and Quinte Waste Solutions find a suitable site, the approximate start-up cost of $61,000 would be borne by Quinte Waste Solutions.

A site has yet to be discussed, but Councilor Janice Maynard noted that if the depot were to be in Picton, some residents would still choose not to go there.

Miller said they know some residents in the northern part of the county will still travel to Belleville to get to the depot, but residents would still be better served with a depot than the four mobile events.

Quinte Waste Solutions believes the proposed option will provide a greatly improved level of service, aid local waste diversion efforts, and provide a foundation for a tailored program in the county in the future.

While not against the proposal, Councilor Phil St-Jean was curious to know what the impact of QWS e-waste collection would mean for local service clubs that collect e-waste as part of a fundraiser.

Rae said this operation is very scalable and if the elected QWS council doesn’t collect e-waste at the depot, they won’t. He said the deposit would be the ideal solution for the county, as they have no plans to withdraw money from charities or service clubs.

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