June 7 - Inside the CRD's bumpy biosolids plan

Plus: Critics rip province's old-growth report


Good morning !

I ran into the hardest-working man in Victoria's show business yesterday. HarbourCats head honcho Jim Swanson was over at Kirby’s doing some sportswear recon for some of his ‘Cats. Maybe for some of his Nanaimo NightOwls, too. Swanson runs both teams. The guy makes the Energizer Bunny look like a loafer. Both clubs are off to 4-2 starts. The HarbourCats face the first-place Wenatchee AppleSox in their home opener tonight at Royal Athletic Park.


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Today’s approx. read time: 6 minutes

🌡️ Weather Forecast

Today: ☀️ 24 / 10

Tomorrow: 🌤️ 22 / 12

Sunday: ☀️ 20 / 11


Delays, disruptions, fires, and health concerns: CRD's biosolids plan beset with issues

Synagro residuals treatment facility at Hartland. Photo: Sidney Coles / Capital Daily

After a series of setbacks and delays, including two fires at the Lafarge cement plant in Richmond, the CRD board approved a biosolids management plan on May 14. The plan comes just in time as biosolids pile up in significant quantities at the Hartland Landfill and in the Cassidy gravel quarry south of Nanaimo. The proposed three-tiered approach will be submitted to the province for approval later this month and by Jan., the CRD will have to implement it.

The first tier is to establish an advanced thermal processing plant at Hartland Landfill that will convert biosolids into biochar—a black residue and form of charcoal. The pilot project isn’t expected to be up and running for at least another two years.

In the meantime, the CRD will continue to direct biosolids to Cassidy quarry and to Lafarge in Richmond, to be used as an alternative fuel in its cement production process. It is also considering the land application of the biosolids as forest fertilization.  

These processes aren't new. They have been the CRD's chosen method of dealing with biosolids for years. But they’re not working. There have been delays and disruptions, as well as concerns about public health and environmental harms associated with the land application of biosolids. 

⚠️ Capital Bulletin

Temporary park area closures at Witty’s Lagoon and Devonian this month for herbicide treatments. 

GoByBike Week: Opt to cycle this week and beyond. 

Ross Bay beach mat is here for the season, allowing for increased accessibility on the rocky beach.

Driving today? Check the current traffic situation via Google.


BC misses the mark with old-growth update, critics say

Jens Wieting, of Sierra Club BC. Photo: Submitted

Four years after the BC government promised to cut a new path for the logging industry and protect endangered old-growth forests, critics say all they’re hearing is crickets.

The province recently released a progress report on how it’s doing in the old preserving of ancient forests department. The reception wasn’t good. 

“I’m disappointed,” was the reaction from the Sierra Club’s Jens Wieting, who said the report failed to include a whole lot of detail, including next steps and deadlines. “Without ambitious timelines and milestones, the newly-released update does not guarantee the necessary forestry reforms nor timely interim and long-term protection of at-risk old-growth,” Wieting said.

The province and First Nations have teamed to temporarily defer logging in 2.4 million ha of old growth including some parts of Fairy Creek watershed, the scene of protracted protests and logging blockades.

In its report, the forestry ministry said it had established a $1B framework agreement with the federal government and the First Nations Leadership Council, and that it continues to push for more jobs for each harvested tree. Still, critics shot back with the word “lacklustre.”


Combating loneliness: a community foundation's role

Are you feeling lonely and disconnected from your community these days? You're not alone. In fact, the World Health Organization has declared loneliness a "global public health priority."

What's more surprising is that those with fewer friendships are less likely to support philanthropic causes in their communities.

But there is hope! One way people are reconnecting with their neighbours is through their community foundations, which have many of the tools to help you combat loneliness.

Read more about how people are forging new friendships and purpose in an age of disconnect. This thoughtful article, written by the Victoria Foundation's Sara Neely, Senior Director of Philanthropic Services, is full of facts, tips, and resources to help you combat loneliness!

⭐️ Capital Picks

🏊 Summer camp/recreation registration. [City of Victoria]

HarbourCats home opener tonight vs. Wenatchee Applesox.

🎵 Join us for: For All to Hear: Signature Concert and Auction. Bid on stunning artwork and generous donations online or in-person. Support Pacific Opera Victoria!*

🌊 Ocean Week wonder-pics from Cecile Brisebois Guillemot.

🤝 Now hiring: Seasonal Purchasing/Receiving Clerk at The Butchart Gardens.

*Sponsored Listing

🗞️ In Other News

The Zone’s Dylan Willows dies of cancer at 44
The longtime radio host signed off on his last The Morning Zone show in Feb. The following month, a two-night concert celebrating Willows took place at the Royal Theatre, with proceeds going to his family. Last month, Willows and his radio partner of 16 years, Jason Lamb, were named the BC Association of Broadcasters Broadcast Performers of the Year. [CHEK]

Downtown radio and TV stations moving to Esquimalt
CTV News Vancouver Island, CFAX 1070 Radio, and 107.3 Virgin FM will move from 1420 Broad—across from Centennial Square—to the new Esquimalt Town Square as soon as Jan. CTV said it hopes the move will free up development space downtown. [CTV]

Number of unregulated drug deaths in BC falls 24% in April
There were 182 such deaths in April, 57 fewer than the previous April. That works out to more than six deaths per day. So far this year, 763 people have died of overdose in this province—and 71% were male. The rate of death for females is now almost double the rate from 2020, the service said. [BC Coroners Service]

Here’s a chance to experience a First Nations banquet
The word naaʔuu means feast, and for the second straight year, the Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks Guardians are putting on a series of them for guests for an evening of ƛaɁuukwiatḥ-style hospitality including traditional—and locally farmed—food, along with art, song, and dance. There are five this month in Tofino, including one tomorrow night. Proceeds go toward Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks and the Nation's work to restore culture and language within its citizen base.


Achieve more with UA Local 324

Plumbers and pipefitters of Vancouver Island: Reach your full potential with UA Local 324. Enjoy steady and stable employment, higher wages, health-care benefits, a pension plan, and much more. Apprentices receive 75% reimbursement of tuition fees. Achieve a positive work-life balance, through UA Local 324. Learn more.

🗓️ Things to do

🏳️‍🌈 Sidney Museum presents Reading Between the Lines for Local Queer History, with a focus on LGBT+ history in and around the Saanich Peninsula. Sidney Museum. Through June. [Info]

🍺 Fridays at the Station. An ongoing pop-up summer series produced by the Victoria Beer Society every Fri. Enjoy flights of BC craft beer, live music, yummy food truck options, and shopping at local businesses and art studios. 720 Station Ave. Today. 4-8pm. [Info]

🎨 Gathered Landscapes. A group exhibition by Barbra Edwards, Diane MacDonald, and Dave Skilling, each employing different tools and materials. Fortune Gallery. Tomorrow-June 22. 1-4pm. [Info]

📯 Swiftsure Big Band with Brenda Morie. This dynamic 17-piece ensemble is a captivating ensemble that pays tribute to jazz and blues icons Natalie Cole, Ella Fitzgerald, and Bessie Smith. Hermann’s. Thu. Doors 5:30pm. Show at 7pm. [Info]

🎵 The Seaside Music Festival presents Leeroy Stagger and Porch Couch. With 11 albums, two EPs, and 17 years as a singer-songwriter, Stagger has cemented his reputation as one of Canada's leading figures in the Americana genre. Hermann’s. Tonight. Doors at 5:30pm. Show at 7pm. [Info]

🎈 South Park Carnival: Head to this fundraising fair tomorrow for face painting, a bouncy castle, dunk tank, silent auction, book sale, and food. Today. 3-7pm. [Info]

🥳 Cook Street Block Party: The Cook Street Village Business Association and CCGF Events present the 5th annual Village Block Party to celebrate the Cook Street Village and the Fairfield Neighbourhood community. Sun. 10am-6pm. [Info]

🎭 Victoria One-Act Play Festival: A spotlight on local theatre with 13 new shows, all written and produced by locals at Belfry Theatre. Concludes tomorrow. 2&7pm. [Info]

🌊 Ocean Week Victoria: Check out this week of educational ocean events—many of which are free—happening through Sun. throughout the CRD. [Info]

🍺 Beer and Hymns: Join this group sing-a-long and enjoy a beer or glass of wine at Christ Church Cathedral. Tonight. 7:30pm. [Info]

📚 Summer Book Sale: St. Mary’s Churchmouse Books celebrates all things green. St. Mary The Virgin Anglican Church. Tomorrow. 10am-2pm. [Info]

👀 In Case You Missed It

Thursday headlines: Poll findings suggest less support for LGBT+ community; Oak Bay man scammed out of $13,500; UVic puts talks with protesters on hold; And more. [June 6]

Rent gap not sustainable, BC seniors’ advocate says. [Capital Daily]

Wildfire and trauma connection investigated by UVic researcher. [Capital Daily]  

Cook Street Block Party expected to draw big crowd on Sunday. [CHEK]

Peacock on the patio: ‘Marjory’ the peahen made herself at home with a pint at Spinnakers. [Photos]

Contribute to Victoria community playlist by 4pm today to make your song picks part of next weekend’s Family Dance.

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