Illegal Dumping Remains A Major Issue for City
Prince George, B.C. – Last week, the City of Prince George announced it would be eliminating commercial garbage pick up in order to focus more attention on the issues of illegal dumping, litter and hypodermic needle pick up.
The situation so bad in some areas, the Spruce City Wildlife Association organized a clean up in L.C. Gunn Park on May 1st. ( see previous story)
( at right, garbage littered through L.C. Gunn Park – image courtesy Spruce City Wildlife Association)
“Illegal dumping is a huge concern” says Sean LeBrun, Manager of Solid Waste and Parks for Prince George, “There are no boundaries for it, it’s north of town, south of town, east, west it’s all over. Prince George covers a huge area and we have no dedicated staff to clean this stuff up.”
It’s been a year and a half since the Foothills Landfill started charging per pick up load for residential garbage, but LeBrun says it’s much too early to say if that is a factor “We had illegal dumping prior to the tipping fees, we had it when Quinn Street ( transfer station) was a dollar, so even back when it was free, people were still going into Ginter’s Field and dropping garbage so it’s certainly not a 100% result of the tipping fee at the landfill.”
There is no cost to drop off most old appliances to the landfill, so LeBrun is at a loss to explain why people continue to dump those items on undeveloped lots in the City. “People don’t make that phone call to find out what their options are, they just throw it in the back of the truck get to the landfill and find there is a fee for appliances that have chemicals in them, and I guess people just feel it’s easier just to toss it over the cutbanks, it’s a never ending issue.”
One of the hotspots for illegal dumping is Hofferkamp Road. The situation so bad, that a few years ago, major work was done to make it more difficult for those large items to be tossed “It’s still a problem” says LeBrun, “We’re still going to have to go back in there and clean up, probably not as often as we had to in the past. With the things that we did, put up a fence, put up bollards and cables, really just trying to make it as difficult as possible for somebody to pack a fridge down, up, over and around, it still happens.”
Hot spots for illegal dumping in Prince George continue to be:
- Hofferkamp Road
- Wilson Park
- Ginter’s field,
- Ferguson Lake
- Forests for the World
- Blueberry Road behind the weigh scales on Highway 97
“Every time we fix something, it moves somewhere else” says Le Brun.
With the cancellation of commercial garbage pick up, the City can have the staff that would normally look after the commercial waste, redirect their efforts and time to cleaning up the illegal dumping sites.