The forfeiture of the lands owned by Cobble Hill Holdings to the Province does not impact the closure plan for the company’s landfill near Shawnigan Lake, nor does it change access to the site.
As a result of outstanding taxes, the Province will now begin the certificate of forfeiture process to take over ownership of the land. A change in ownership does not affect the Spill Prevention Order or the closure plan. Both remain in effect, as do any associated environmental monitoring obligations.
The parties named on the spill prevention order — referred to as the “named parties”— remain responsible for implementing the closure plan.
To date, the named parties have followed the plan and its approval conditions:
- Two new shallow monitoring wells and a new seepage blanket well were installed Nov. 4 and Nov. 6, 2019, in advance of the Nov. 18 deadline.
- The objective of those installations is to improve the groundwater monitoring network next to the landfill.
- The comprehensive pre-winter inspection under the supervision of a qualified professional was completed on Nov. 12 in advance of the Nov. 18 deadline. No upgrades or maintenance were found to be required.
- The named parties have submitted the draft quality management plan, the pre-winter inspection report and the slope stability report. The ministry is reviewing these documents.
The property is still permitted under the Mines Act and is therefore closed to the public. For safety reasons, people are not permitted to enter the site at any time. Entering the site could result in both injury and prosecution.
The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy will continue to oversee compliance with the spill prevention order and its implementation. Failure to comply with closure plan requirements will result in increasing compliance and enforcement actions, including fines and prosecution.
For more information about the procedures surrounding overdue rural taxes, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/taxes/property-taxes/annual-property-tax/important-dates/overdue