About the Blog:

Guelph Politico is locally sourced and dedicated to covering the political and cultural scene in the City of Guelph. Est. 2008.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Organic Waste Plant: The City Dossier

Today, the CIty of Guelph released the "backgrounder" for the new Organic Waste Processing Plant which will be will be located at the Waste Resource Innovation Centre, 110 Dunlop Drive once completed in 2011.

If you want to see the whole dossier, you can click over to the City's website here and read all about it. Below I clipped some of the pertinent highlights for your future post-dining clean-up pleasure.

Plant capacity
  • Guelph currently generates approximately 10,000 tonnes of organic waste each year.
  • Similar to the capacity of the original composting facility, the OWPF is designed to handle 30,000 tonnes of organic material per year to ensure efficiencies of scale (i.e. the minimum capacity in order for the facility to be economically viable) and to allow for future population growth.
  • The amount of organic waste that Guelph generates is expected to grow from approximately 10,000 tonnes per year to over 16,000 tonnes annually over a 25 year period.
  • To take advantage of its excess plant capacity, the City will benefit by receiving organic waste from other municipalities, which will reduce operating and capital costs. The Region of Waterloo has entered into a contract with AIM to have its organic waste processed at a facility operated by AIM. The Region will pay AIM to process its organics and the City of Guelph would receive compensation from AIM for the use of its facility should the Region of Waterloo have its organic waste processed at Guelph’s facility, reducing costs to Guelph taxpayers.
Operational costs associated with disposal and processing organic waste
  • $85/tonne to ship organic waste to New York for disposal through energy-from-waste incineration (price is approximate, depends on fuel surcharge); this is the current method used by the City of Guelph and is not considered to be diversion from disposal by the Ontario Ministry of Environment.
  • $100-$150/tonne to ship bagged organics to a private sector composting facility in Ontario, subject to available capacity (e.g. the Region of Waterloo currently ships its organic waste to a composting facility in Hamilton).
  • $87.50/tonne (plus the capital cost of construction for the new facility) to process Guelph’s organics locally at the new organics facility.
Capital costs associated with building the new OWPF
  • $32,825,000 is the total budget for the new OWPF.
  • $27,524,400 to design and build the new OWPF (not including taxes).
  • The remaining budget ($5.3 million) will be used to secure all necessary provincial approvals, project management, taxes and contingency.
Cost per tonne

In 2011, it’s expected to cost residents approximately $2 million* more to process wet waste than in 2010, which works out to approximately $0.70 per week, per household**. This additional cost is primarily the capital financing costs of the OWPF.

The City has the option to choose a pricing structure that would reduce the operating and capital costs of the OWPF. Later this year the City will meet with the contractor to discuss the available pricing structures.

(*Based on debt issued for the facility in 2010, completion of the organics facility in 2011, and half a year of plant operation in 2011. **Based on the average property value of $257,000.)

Note: These numbers are based on information available today and are subject to change as details are confirmed (e.g. sales tax impacts, fixed vs. sliding scale operating costs, interest rates).

Project timeline (as of this date)

  • March 2010 - Provincial permits and approvals (anticipated)
  • Spring 2010 - Construction to begin
  • 2010 - Community Liaison Committee to be established
  • Spring/summer 2011 - Anticipated start of operation
  • 2011 - Staff report regarding the efficiencies of moving from bagged organics collection to using green bins will go to Council for consideration.

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