The Future of Brady Road Landfill

On October 19, 2011, in Speaking Up, by Justin

We have been operating Brady Landfill under a permit since 1973. Provincial regulations have evolved and landfills in Manitoba are now required to be licensed. As part of the licensing process, we prepared an environmental impact assessment.

City staff were be available to share information and welcome feedback on the future of Brady Landfill and the environmental impact assessment at:

  • A public meeting – October 27, 2011, 6:30pm-8:30pm, St Norbert Community Centre – 3450 Pembina Hwy
  • The Green Lifestyle and Natural Living Show – October 22nd & 23rd, 2011, Winnipeg Convention Centre (please note, there is an admission fee)

[Jump to Project Updates]

Brady Landfill Today

Aerial image of Brady Landfill

  • The City’s sole landfill since 1998
  • Entire site is about 790 hectares (larger than River Heights) – about 1/8 of the site is used for garbage burial
  • Handles more than 400,000 tonnes of garbage each year – about 1/3 of this is organic waste
  • Emits greenhouse gases equal to the annual emissions from about 70,000 passenger vehicles
  • Produces up to six tanker trucks of leachate every day for treatment (the harmful liquid produced by moisture filtering down through garbage)

Current Diversion Efforts at Brady

Tire Diversion area at Brady Landfill

More than 11,800 tonnes of material is kept out of the landfill and reused each year, including:

  • more than 5,000 tonnes of glass used for road base
  • over 4,000 bicycles collected to date for refurbishing
  • more than 2,500 appliances per year recycled for the metal
  • more than 500 tonnes of metal recycled
  • more than 2,000 tonnes of wood waste turned into flooring and other products
  • 4,200 tonnes of yard waste composted
  • over 100 tonnes of tires made into new products

Environmental Impact Assessment

Stantec, an independent consulting firm, conducted the Environmental Impact Assessment.

Key Technical Findings

  • The landfill does not impact the quality of groundwater beneath the landfill
    • the landfill is situated on a thick layer of clay separating it from the groundwater
    • the groundwater in this area is not used as a drinking water source because of its naturally occurring salt content
  • Instances of odour are short-lived and not routine
    • improved operational practices and diversion opportunities will further reduce odours
  • The landfill is not harmful to human health
    • medical data indicates no human health implications throughout the 40 years this landfill has been operating

Implications of Findings

  • The deep clay subsurface has effectively prevented harmful substances from reaching the groundwater
  • Use of artificial liners under future garbage burial areas will create even more protection
  • Retrofitting current burial areas for landfill gas recovery and improved diversion and operations will almost eliminate odours

Environmental Site Improvements

Benefits

Improvement

Install a landfill gas system Reduces odour, greenhouse gas
Install a liner at the bottom of the burial areas Protects groundwater
Build a wetlands area Protects surface water
Apply cover and vegetation over completed burial areas Reduces leachate, and nuisance birds and animals

The Future of Brady Road Landfill

Rename the site to The Brady Road Resource Management Facility, to reflect:

  • 35 – 50% less garbage requiring burial by 2020 once the Garbage and Recycling Master Plan is in place
  • increased diversion opportunities

New Diversion Opportunities

  • Facility to process recyclable materials
  • Composting facility that would produce material that could be sold, given to the public, or used on City property
  • “Green Business Park” for local industries that would remake the materials on site into reusable items for sale
  • Research and business development centre
  • Community Resource Recovery Centre – drop off area for material that could be processed and reused, resold or recycled (e.g., construction and demolition material, household items)

Other Opportunities

  • capture of gas in burial and composting areas will create potential for energy recovery
  • recreation area (e.g., park, sports field)
  • community gardens
  • habitat creation including wetlands and forest

Future of Brady Site Map

Next Steps

  • Incorporate your feedback into the environment licence application
  • Submit Environment Act Proposal to Province by end of 2011
  • Report back to community on outcome of licence application
  • Rezone the site to accommodate diverse uses
  • Ongoing community conversation on details of future plans

Project Updates

For more information, please contact us using our form or by phone at 311.

 

Comments for this post are now closed.

17 Responses to The Future of Brady Road Landfill

  1. Paul Moeckel says:

    Brad Road is spewing garbage and litter thoughout the entire area. Plastic bags are blowing across farm fields for miles, and now can be seen as far away as Oak Bluff. The highway is lined with trash that falls off trucks enroute to the dump. The fences along the dump do nothing to stop light materials from being blown away. It is a disgusting eyesore, especially in this day and age. Obviously no realistic thought given to future planning of the city. The smell that will engulf the new residents of the developements moving closer, will cause an outrage amoung the new home buyers, who aren't made aware of the problem, as it certainly is not a selling feature. When the wind blows from the south, life in suburbia is going to be unbearable. Also, what about ground water issues from the dump… the La Salle and Red River are close by.
    What about the old dump sites east of Brady Road and along Cadboro Road, that have been and will be excavated to make room for the new developements. The Stench of the water coming out of the Cadboro Road site was unbelievable… what was in that water.. and what are the ramifications of possible contaminated ground water and sump pits and pumps spewing out the seepage into the yards and streets of the new area?
    What are the findings of any testing done before developement went ahead ?

    • SpeakUpWinnipeg says:

      When the Brady site opened in 1973, it was remote from residents. In 1985, when the decision was made to have only one landfill located at Brady, it was still relatively remote from residents. Since that time residential developments have continued to move closer to Brady. With the planned changes at Brady, the garbage burial operation will progressively move further from residential developments and with more waste diversion, smaller operating areas and improved operations will be implemented. Improved odour and litter control are key improvements being implemented at Brady.

      Regarding groundwater, the deep clay soils at this site provide effective containment of harmful substances.

      Regarding the former landfill on Cadboro Road that is being excavated, the consultant for the developer advises that:

      -The former landfill is currently being fully excavated and removed to Brady Road Landfill to rehabilitate the site to meet environmental quality guidelines and be dedicated as a green space.

      -Water currently being managed on-site is leachate, a liquid that is found within landfilled waste as a product of water mixing with decomposing waste. Environmental investigations of the site were undertaken prior to excavation and continue to-date. As part of those investigations, site water that does not meet regulated guidelines is sent to the North End Water Pollution Control Centre for treatment.

      -Removal of the landfill will be completed in 2012. As the site is located in thick clay and the waste source is being completely removed, the possibility of contaminants seeping out of the site is remote.

      We hope that this answers your questions and thanks for your comments.

  2. Lisa says:

    I am a recent resident of the new Waverley West development and we paid a sizeable sum of money for our brand new home. I was assured time and time again by the Ladco Developers, as well as my builder, that living close to Brady Landfill would not be a problem when we built our home. I was told the landfill would be moving further south next year and that there were no reported odours from residents in the area. This summer we could smell landfill odour on a weekly basis and on occassion we had to move our activites inside because the smell became too strong. Our property taxes have recently been assessed at $6,000 per year, so I would hope that for all the property taxes we are paying the city will do whatever it takes to eliminate the odour, reduce methane gas emissions for our general health and the environment, and obstruct the view of the landfill. I love the area we live in due to it's proximity to our everyday activities and our new neighbours are wonderful, the landfill is our only concern at this time. I am curious to know why the landfill smell is worst in the evening? Is a lot of garbage buried at this time?

    • SpeakUpWinnipeg says:

      With the planned changes at Brady, the garbage burial operation will progressively move further from residential developments and with more waste diversion, smaller operating areas and improved operations will be implemented. The present landfilling operation will only be visible to nearby residents for about another 5 years. Within this time the operation will become more compact, berms (dykes) will be used to screen the operation and landscaping of finished slopes will be underway. Also, operational improvements including more frequent covering of waste and gull control will help to make the operation less obvious.

      Improved odour control is a key focus in the improvements at Brady. Currently we are carrying out a new method of covering the waste on a frequent basis that so far is proving to be effective in controlling odour. Furthermore, there are upcoming changes that will help to control odours, including the following:

      -Monitoring odours at the perimeter of the site on a regular basis, especially under adverse wind conditions to identify any significant odours and to allow for early action to mitigate the odours at the source
      -Moving towards one smaller operating area which will result in less exposed garbage
      -Moving the future operation further south
      -Installing a landfill gas collection and flaring system
      -Composting under controlled conditions, some of the more odour producing organics such as kitchen waste organics and biosolids

      We are not exactly sure why the landfill odour would be worst in the evening. This is not because more garbage is being buried at this time, but may be related to cover operations being completed at the end of the work day and odours not being dissipated until the cover is completely in place. In any event the changes referred to earlier should improve this situation.

      We hope that this answers your questions and thanks for your comments.

  3. Nicole says:

    The Brady Road Landfill site is too close to the new Waverly West development, Richmond West and St. Norbert. This year the garbage smell travelled to these neighbourhoods on a regular basis. I am not sure what the independent consultants were measuring when they say "Instances of odour are short-lived and not routine". Maybe they only spent a couple days in the area but as a resident who lives in the surrounding neighbourhood the smell seemed to be a weekly problem.

    I think any garbage disposal site should be a lot further from residential neighbourhoods.

    • SpeakUpWinnipeg says:

      When the Brady site opened in 1973, it was remote from residents. In 1985, when the decision was made for Brady to be the only City-operated active landfill, it was still relatively remote from residents. Since that time residential developments have continued to move closer to Brady. With the planned changes at Brady, the garbage burial operation will progressively move further from residential developments and with more waste diversion, smaller operating areas and improved operations will be implemented. Improved odour control is a key focus in the improvements at Brady.

      Currently we are carrying out a new method of covering the waste on a frequent basis that so far is proving to be effective in controlling odour. There are also upcoming changes that will help to control odours, including:

      -Monitoring odours at the perimeter of the site on a regular basis, especially under adverse wind conditions to identify any significant odours and to allow for early action to mitigate the odours at the source
      -Moving towards one smaller operating area which will result in less exposed garbage
      -Moving the future operation further south
      -Installing a landfill gas collection and flaring system
      -Composting some of the more odour producing organics such as kitchen waste organics and biosolids under controlled conditions,

      We hope that this answers your questions and thanks for your comments.

  4. Rach says:

    I like the idea of a recreational area and wetlands. I can't imagine anyone paying $500000-1M for the new homes going up in Waverly West want to look out of their windows and have a dump for their view! Does anyone know when this project is to be completed? I live by the dump so I'm pretty excited to see the changes!

    • SpeakUpWinnipeg says:

      The present landfilling operation will only be visible to nearby residents for about another 5 years. Within this time, the operation will become more compact, berms (dykes) will be used to screen the operation, and landscaping of finished slopes will be underway. Also, operational improvements such as more frequent covering of waste and gull control will help to make the operation less obvious.

      There is sufficient capacity at Brady for at least 100 years. In spite of this, the objective is to continuously work towards reducing garbage burial requirements. Council’s recent approval of the garbage and recycling master plan is a commitment to this direction.

      Thanks for your comments.

  5. Govind Thawani says:

    This site is too close to residents and should be shut down and new facility should be located North of the city where development will not approach for 50 years.

    • SpeakUpWinnipeg says:

      When the Brady site opened in 1973, it was remote from residents. In 1985, when the decision was made for Brady to be the only City-operated active landfill, it was still relatively remote from residents. Since that time residential developments have continued to move closer to Brady. With the planned changes at Brady, the garbage burial operation will progressively move further from residential developments and with more waste diversion, smaller operating areas and improved operations will be implemented. These changes will minimize impacts from the operation on residents.

      Brady is located on an ideal site for an environmental and waste containment standpoint. The study leading up to the 1985 decision was only able to identify one potential site to the north within a reasonable haul distance. This site was not recommended since the soil and groundwater conditions required for a landfill were inferior to Brady and it was located outside of the City of Winnipeg proper.

      Thanks for your comments.

  6. Jonathan Greene says:

    Wow, I can't believe nobody has commented. Well, a lot of the ideas are good though I don't know if the best place for a sports field is right beside the garbage pile.

    I figured somebody would say something about the $50 fee!

  7. Steve says:

    Instead of big centralized trucks moving all that organic waste around it would be much more efficient to start composting programs in schools and community clubs, get people to compost in their backyards, put leaf mulch back into their flowerbeds. I shouldn't have to pay taxes to support a big heavy inefficient approach that involves huge trucks driving all over the city and wearing down the infrstructure. You can't be serious about community gardens at the landfill, it stinks, it's not easily accessible, who knows what's in the soil. This plan seems to take the current system and try to tweek it using buzz words and 90s approaches. Winnipeg would benefit much more from engaging and educating citizens directly about returning organics to the soil. I've managed to do so by having my neighbors give me their organic waste and wouldn't be surprised if I am net 50-75 bags per year more than our household throws out, all in one small backyard, no tax money or required.

    • SpeakUpWinnipeg says:

      Your suggestion of backyard and community-based composting would be an ideal solution for dealing with organics and we commend your personal efforts in this regard. However, we are not aware of any large cities with significant organics diversion that rely solely on this means of composting. We certainly would like to see this happen and will be continuing to promote composting at source, but believe that curbside collection and centralized composting will be required to achieve the magnitude of diversion targeted under our master plan. Furthermore, our public consultations over the past year indicate that there is public support for our approach.

      If community gardens were to be located at the Brady Landfill, they would be located on natural soils separate from the actual landfill operation. However, this is just an idea at this point and the purpose of floating this idea is to get feedback such as yours.

      We hope that this response answers your questions and thank you for your comments.

      • Aaron says:

        The extra costs of organics collection should be recovered by decreasing the frequency of collection. If the 240L bin can last a week now it should be able to last 2 weeks once we hit 50% diversion.

  8. Ted Jaworski says:

    Count the aluminum cans! Environmental alright! What is this from Honest Vandal?

  9. Joe Nation says:

    Why is it always the northend? As soon as there is a problem even down to garbage disposal there is comments about the northend. I haul garbage daily and i see bins and yards that are full all over the city.. Maybe the northend's garbage problem would be solved if the city would have more pick up days. But then again who am i to talk i'm just the owner of "First Nation Sensation Moving & Hauling". What do i know i live downtown! 😉

  10. Mike Di Ianni says:

    I believe that a Rec park is the best solution for Brady landfill and should include a ski and snowboard hill in the wintertime so that our children and adults have a place close to home to enjoy the outdoors