Open letter to Community Services Minister Elaine Taylor:
I wish to express my disappointment with the process of establishing a waste-management plan and the intent on the part of the Village of Haines Junction to acquire a waste incinerator.
As a longtime resident of the Haines Junction area (1970-present) I feel that an incinerator is the wrong approach. We live within one kilometre of the proposed site; two members of my family have asthma, therefore health issues are important to us.
The first time our family heard of the incinerator plan going ahead was at a public meeting where an Outside company was hired to promote the benefits of having an incinerator in our town.
There has been very little public consultation on the issue of waste management at our current dump. We feel the process needs to start over with an unbiased group to plan for the future of the Haines Junction dump and waste-management plan. This group should be at arm’s-length from the Village of Haines Junction and the Yukon government.
The public has so far been essentially left out of the process and is largely misinformed. Mayor and council appear to be closed-minded and not interested in what residents have to say. There appears to be a big rush to do things and the proposed plan would be, in our opinion, both wrong and a waste of money. With public involvement we could initiate a new system that works by prioritizing education and recycling.
Haines Junction has the opportunity to develop a waste management system to be proud of, as opposed to becoming a garbage burner on the edge of Kluane National Park. We can do better than that!
My family is not in favour of a waste incinerator. We have recycled and reused for years and view an incinerator as a health hazard and waste of resources.
and Zoe Eckervogt