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Christchurch City Council Media Release 12 February 1999

Local authorities back regional landfill

Christchurch City Council and its five Canterbury local authority partners are totally committed to the public-private joint venture that is to develop a new regional landfill said the chairman of the joint Local Authority Enterprise comprising 50% of the project, Denis O’Rourke.

"This public-private joint venture is Canterbury’s way of ensuring that there is an economic, modern, environmentally secure and well-engineered landfill to handle the region’s waste after recycling," said Denis O’Rourke, a Christchurch city councillor.

"The alternative was to have several private waste companies, Christchurch City and the region’s other local authorities each operating their own landfills spread around the region," he said.

Not only would this be more expensive, as smaller landfills cost more to run, but it would involve greater environmental risk than a single site.

In arriving at a final public-private joint venture agreement the local authorities had given nothing away in terms of a strong continuing policy of waste minimisation including recycling and continuing to reduce the region’s volume of waste.

In fact through working together the joint venture partners saw huge benefits from co-ordinating and streamlining the waste minimisation efforts being made across Canterbury, said Cr O’Rourke.

Both the public and private sector partners in the joint venture were fully committed to the recycling, reduction and reuse of waste and would work closely with the councils to help meet their communities’ goals.

"A single regional landfill will make even more sense when waste volumes continue to fall, because having all residual waste volume managed in one place ensures the most economic operation and the lowest possible dumping charges," said Cr O’Rourke..

The structure of the joint venture would not allow the two private partners to dominate.

The owner of the landfill would be the joint venture company Canterbury Regional Landfill (CRL).

CRL’s board would have eight directors and through their Local Authority Enterprise company the participating local authorities would appoint four, one of whom would be CRL’s chairman for the first seven years. These appointments should be made at CRL’s meeting in March.

The two private waste companies EnviroWaste Services Ltd and Waste Management NZ Ltd each owned 25% of CRL and would each appoint two directors each to the CRL board, none of whom would be chairman in the development and commissioning stages..

EnviroWaste and Waste Management have also formed their own joint venture company Canterbury Waste Services Ltd (CWS).

"CWS has been instructed by CRL to find a suitable site for the Canterbury Regional Landfill somewhere in Canterbury, obtain the necessary consents and then develop and operate the landfill for CRL under contract.

"They are the partners with the necessary waste management expertise and experience to carry out those responsibilities," said Cr O’Rourke.

"Previous investigations by private waste companies and local authorities in Canterbury identified a range of possibly suitable sites," said Cr O’Rourke.

"But CWS has been instructed by CRL to start looking for a site completely from scratch, even though some of the sites previously identified may have been bought or secured in the expectation they would be suitable for a landfill."

CWS’s project team had just been appointed and represented 25 areas of professional expertise. In due course CWS would report for a decision to CRL on a preferred site and CWS would then be instructed to prepare the necessary resource consent applications on behalf of the public private-joint venture.

"The public-private joint venture partners are committed to an environmentally secure, well-engineered landfill equal to the best available anywhere operating somewhere in Canterbury by 2002 when the Burwood landfill’s consents expire.

"The new landfill will also enable all the old-style rubbish tips and dumps throughout the region to be closed and to allow Canterbury to be clean and green at least in terms of waste disposal," said Cr O’Rourke.


For further information contact:Denis O’Rourke. Tel (03) 379 1660.

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