January 24, 2005

Draft EIA guidelines issued for Irving landfill proposal

New Brunswick's Department of Environment and Local Government has issued for comment draft guidelines for an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of JD Irving's proposal to construct and operate an industrial landfill and related facilities in the Coal Creek area near Grand Lake. The company is seeking to build the industrial landfill in order to dispose of waste from its Saint John pulp and paper mill such as lime mud, fly ash, grits and dregs.

The mill generates approximately 54,600 tonnes of such waste annually. The material has been disposed of on-site, but it was determined that the site has reached its capacity and has no further potential for expansion. Irving registered its proposal for the EIA process in June 2003 and in November 2004, Environment and Local Government Minister Brenda Fowlie determined that a full EIA was required for the project to assess the nature and significance of its potential impacts.

The proposed project consists of three distinct phases, each of which will in turn be divided into a series of individual cells. A leachate collection and treatment system will be constructed for the landfill, along with related infrastructure such as an administration building and access roads.

The guidelines, which will be used by Irving as a framework for conducting the EIA for its project, describe issues to be examined and addressed during the EIA study and subsequent report. In the case of the proposed industrial landfill, the EIA study will examine the potential environmental effects of the construction and operation of the landfill plus related facilities and infrastructure. The study will also evaluate the alternative option, i.e. not constructing the landfill, and will discuss appropriate mitigative/optimization measures related to all the option. Once completed, the EIA report will be submitted to the Department of the Environment and Local Government for review.

The provincial EIA regulation provides a 30-day comment period on the draft guidelines to the minister's attention. Comments are due by February 17, 2005 and should be directed to the Department of the Environment and Local Government, c/o Project Assessment Branch, PO Box 6000, Fredericton E3B 5H1, FAX 506/453-2627, E-mail, EIA-EIE@gnb.ca.

Final guidelines will be issued for the EIA report, which will be reviewed by a committee of technical experts from various provincial and federal agencies.

The draft guidelines may be viewed on-line at www.gnb.ca/0009/0377/0002/0014-e.asp.

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