Perfect waste management

Categories: 

by: 

Sheila McCrindle

There is an old saying among environmentalist “Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.”  This applies whenever solutions to environmental problems are being devised. Especially solutions involving human behaviour.  It means that just because a solution is not perfect does not mean it is not good.  Dealing with household organic waste is just such an example.

  There are definitely challenges to composting organic waste at home, but they are not insurmountable.  Plant wastes are pretty easy to compost, a decent composting bin the occasional turning over of the material in it and removal of good compost at the bottom.  Anyone who can separate their waste into a special bin and take that bin to the edge of the road is already doing the same amount of work.  But, you might ask, what about animal food scraps, bones and fat and the like, they don’t go in most composters.  And that is right, composting animal scraps is challenging and requires more expensive composting equipment.  But this is where we get to the perfect being the enemy of the good.  If it is good to home-compost plant material, is it good enough?

It is helpful to have some numbers.  Thanks to Recic-Quebec, we can look at a waste characterization study done for the MRC de Robert-Cliché, a region with characteristics similar to MoP.

The results of the study indicated that organic waste made up between 43 and 64% of the waste generated by households and 30% of the waste generated by farms.  However almost all of that material is garden waste and household waste that can be composted at home (their terminology).  The volume of waste not suitable for backyard composting ranged from 0.5% to 6% for households and was 0% for farms.

So if the vast amount of organic waste can be composted at home, why is this not the preferred solution for our Municipality?  It is seems expensive to send big trucks hundreds of kms, emitting pollution and damaging roads in order to get 1 or 2% of household waste.  Are we letting the perfect be the enemy of the good?

Coda: It is worth noting that perfect diversion rarely happens, even after years of curbside collection of recyclables about 20 – 25% of our garbage stream is material that should be in the recycle bin.

Footnote: The Waste Characterization Study for MRC de Robert-Cliché has been shared with all of the Municipal Councillors and the Mayor. If you are interested in seeing the whole report just ask one of them.

Nos autres nouvelles / Our other News

We are here: new municipal map helps residents feel pride

Categories: 

by: 

Kate Aley

 

Watch your mail boxes! A brand new map of the Municipality of Pontiac (MoP) will be on its way you within the next few weeks. Showing the entire area of the municipality as well as details of the more complicated street systems in villages and along the beaches, the map was created to replace a much older black and white version that had become obsolete.

Un cadeau pour les yeux:deux Jardins locaux comme sites

Categories: 

by: 

Kate Aley

translation: 

Guy Faubert

Papillons, oiseaux et mélisse......Les 5 et 6 août, six des plus remarquables jardins de la région exposeront pour le Gardens and Gift Tour.  Selon la publicité, cet événement est un tour qui mettra en vedette des jardins de campagne de la partie la plus à l'ouest du Québec, c'est-à-dire la belle région du Pontiac.

Les réparations sur le pont Egan affecteront la circulation

Categories: 

by: 

Kate Aley

translation: 

Guy Faubert

Le sept juillet, le Ministère des Transports du Québec annonçait que des réparations allaient être effectuées au pont de la rivière Quyon sur le chemin Egan à partir du 10 juillet.

New walking group gets community moving

Categories: 

by: 

Kate Aley

Countless medical studies have proven that regular exercise is vital for health and mobility. Now Pontiac has one more opportunity to get up and go. Pontiac Walks (PW) is a new initiative created by the Groupe de ​Médecine Familiale (GMF) based in Shawville to encourage people to take regular walks.

Above, RN Katie Taylor is laced up and ready to hit the pavement.

A gift for the eyes: garden tour features two local sites

Categories: 

by: 

Kate Aley

Butterflies, birds and bee balm... on August 5th and 6th, six remarkable gardens across this region will be on show at the Gardens and Gifts Tour. According to publicity, the event is "a self-guided garden tour featuring country gardens in West Quebec’s beautiful Pontiac region".

Signaux d'alerte pour le feu: les panneaux d'avertissement SOPFEU enlevé

Categories: 

by: 

Kate Aley

translation: 

Guy Faubert

En conduisant ma voiture de Shawville vers Quyon, j'ai remarqué que le panneau d'avertissement pour les dangers du feu avait disparu de l'intersection du chemin Clarendon et de la route 148.  On ne l'a pas enlevé pour une simple réparation, il est bien parti pour de bon.

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