Seabird Island opened their new 4000 tonne per year composting facility on April 19 in conjunction with Earth Day celebrations. Chief Clem Seymour spoke about the importance of caring for the earth and giving back to it, so that it will care for us and for generations to come. The Seabird Island Community has a long history of caring for the land. Chief Seymour also invited all participants to receive the gift of a tree seedling and plant it to remember the importance of caring for the earth.
I was privileged to explain the specifics of the composting facility and the opportunity to discuss the importance of compost in maintaining healthy soils so that we all can have quality foods with lower amounts of pesticides and chemicals. I shared the integrated vision of recycling organic waste from Seabird Island’s own community, then welcoming participation and involvement from neighbouring communities. I shared Seabird Island’s holistic framework that integrates economy, environment and community. Environmental protection for a composting facility includes ensuring that the 1.1 million gallons of precipitation that falls on each acre of land between October and March is managed in a way that doesn’t pollute the land or water. Managing odor risk is a very important social or community value. And finally, the project has to economically make sense. If Seabird Island determines that the current tipping fees for organic waste do not adequately reflect the true cost of managing the waste in a sustainable manner, they have the choice to patiently wait.
However, given that Seabird Island has a very large tract of agricultural land that can benefit from the organic matter and compost, has the ambition and motivation to make it work, we hope that its only a matter of time until the vision of the 80,000 tonne per year organic waste recovery facility will be a reality.
I have shared Seabird Island’s composting initiatives in a previous blog as well. http://www.transformcompostsystems.com/blog/wp-admin/post.php?post=103&action=edit
The grand opening was also well covered in the Agassiz Harrison Observer (http://www.agassizharrisonobserver.com/news/204896121.html)