Someone dropped the ball on Dunbrack Street last summer, but it won’t happen again.
Yesterday, staff explained how a biosolids fertilizer wasn’t applied properly last summer and the weather conditions made it stink up the area for days.
“People are just grossed out (about) what happens after they flush the toilet,” said Richard MacLellan of HRM’s Sustainable Environment Management Office.
But using biosolids as fertilizer is logical, scientific and environmentally sustainable, he said.
Marilyn Cameron, with the Nova Scotia Environmental Network, disagreed.
“This is not recycling; to me, it’s pollution transfer,” she said.
Cameron and several councillors expressed concern about metals and drug remnants in the fertilizer.
“Just the thought of this makes me rather ill,” said Coun. Gloria McCluskey.
Coun. Dawn Sloane said there’s a reason people don’t plant near outhouses.
Lise Leblanc, a consultant for N-Viro, the company making the fertilizer, pointed out it’s a common practice and a number of items sold in local grocery stores were grown with these kinds of fertilizers.
In the end, councillors voted to have Halifax Water study the issue further.
Carl Yates, manager of Halifax Water, said his organization is already studying the option of burning waste for energy use.
Coun. Steve Streatch said support for biosolid fertilizer likely would have been approved yesterday had not “local actresses (Ellen Page) and restaurant owners (Lil MacPherson)” spoken out on the issue.
“We need more science than rhetoric,” he said.
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