Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce facts on sewage questioned

Reader counters statements by Chamber of Commerce CEO related to sewage treatment

Re: Esquimalt efforts applauded – now it’s time to move forward (Letters, April 2)

I must counter Bruce Carter, CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce on a number of points.

First, he says they conducted an investigation on sewage treatment. Yet a search of the website going back over a year and using the keyword sewage finds only the self-serving recent letter to the Victoria News.

Was it a secret investigation? Where are the results? Or did he just sit down over a single malt with the Capital Regional District chair?

Second, of the people from all over the region who spoke, 99 per cent opposed the plant. He fails to mention this. He also fails to mention that current practice meets environmental regulations and will do so for many years to come. Thousands of fine salmon are caught near the outfall. I know because I fish there.

The site is too small, and vulnerable to earthquake and tsunami; the treatment is outmoded, may produce superbugs, as have others of its type, and does nothing to reduce metals and drugs entering the water. It requires many kilometres of new pipe to Hartland where they have no idea what to do with the effluent. An eight-inch pipe will take effluent to the dump and a 10-inch pipe will return to the plant. Figure that out.

Victoria taxpayers will be on the hook for cost overruns on this boondoggle, for possibly $500 to $700 per household per year in perpetuity.

It will ruin the cruise ship industry as they’ll dock a boatlength and downwind from the this huge monstrosity at our harbour entrance. It will change us from the best small city to the only city with a sewage plant as its first and last impression to visitors. The whole idea stinks.

Ian Wade

Esquimalt