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Weigh bridge coming for airport dump site

A fairer system for dumping charges is coming for both the Marsh Folly and airport dumps, according to Public Works Minister Patricia Gordon-Pamplin.

Starting next month, horticultural waste at Marsh Folly will be billed by weight rather than the number of loads — and a sum of $100,000 has been put aside to build a weigh bridge for the dump site outside LF Wade International Airport.

In her budget brief, the Minister noted that Marsh Folly had been hit by a serious fire in March of 2012 — and that the Ministry had taken to using infrared surveillance to spot pockets of heat building up in the dump.

Three “hot spots” were detected over the 2013/14 fiscal year, and were dealt with before they flared up.

Meanwhile, asbestos currently being stored in rusting containers on Government properties at the East End are being “encased”, she said. A sum of $500,000 has been set aside to continue this in the coming year.

“As many of the containers carrying the asbestos are in a poor state after many years of deterioration, this is likely to be a slow process,” Ms Gordon-Pamplin said.

A $194,000 cut to the education budget for waste management reflects a reduction in advertising and marketing — as well as the removal of a Government subsidy for Keep Bermuda Beautiful.

The Minister told MPs that an average of 400 tons of domestic waste is collected every week on the Island.

Workers have had “challenges” in keeping 12 garbage trucks running during the week, as the fleet ages — and some of the replacements had manufacturing faults.

A total of 53,000 tons of waste will have been processed at Tynes Bay by the close of the current fiscal year.

“This figure is reflective of the downturn in the economy and reduced population, and is significantly below what was being treated shortly after the turn of the century,” Ms Gordon-Pamplin said.

“The amount of waste treated in 2012/13, of 60,700 tons, is considered to be an unusual spike rather than the norm. As a consequence, the amount of electricity generated and sold to Belco is forecast to be less in 2013/14 as compared to the previous year.”

Tynes Bay generated 6,000 cubic yards of ash concrete, which is being used for land reclamation and storm surge protection at the airport.

Ms Gordon-Pamplin said both the Department of Environmental Protection and the Environmental Authority had voiced concerns about “contaminants in Castle Harbour, which they believe to be emanating from the Airport Waste Management Facility”.

An investigation by an environmental consultant is to be handed in to the Ministry later this month.

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Published March 18, 2014 at 9:00 am (Updated March 17, 2014 at 11:49 pm)

Weigh bridge coming for airport dump site

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