In an about face, the Houston government has approved an application that
will have devastating environmental implications for the surrounding
communities of the Otter Lake landfill.
Since opening in 1999, the Otter Lake landfill has operated with a front-end
processor and waste stabilization facility (FEP/WSF) -– allowing for the
removal of hazardous materials and organic waste before it is buried in the
For several years, HRM has been looking to scrap the system because of its
$2 million price tag. But, due to its proven environmental benefits, all
provincial parties -– including the Conservatives – supported the
continuation of the FEP/WSF system in 2013.
“It’s a betrayal to see this government have such disregard for the
environment, and eliminate these protections within months of being
elected,” says Liberal Leader Iain Rankin. “This will result in unsorted waste
flowing directly into the landfill and organics will no longer be stabilized
before they are buried.”
A public consultation process in the winter of 2021 revealed that 95 per cent
of the community had concerns about potential changes to the system.
“A resounding number of residents spoke out about this change, but the
Houston government has turned a blind eye,” says Rankin. “The residents of
Timberlea-Prospect need to know – why is this government not on their