Consultants engaged for $500,000 to produce 50-year waste plan

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A consultancy firm with operations in 40 countries has been selected to help plan the Cayman Islands government’s 50-year waste management strategy.  

AMEC was chosen after a bidding process through the government’s Central Tenders Committee for a contract of just more than $500,000. The cost includes financial consultant KPMG, which is partnering with AMEC.  

In addition to preparing a national strategy for solid waste, AMEC is also contracted to prepare a business case and procurement support for the eventual creation of an “integrated solid waste management system.” That system will include a revamp of trash collection, operations at the George Town Landfill, and recycling and waste-to-energy proposals, according to Health Minister Osbourne Bodden. 

“We took great pains to ensure that the process would be well-governed from start to finish,” Minister Bodden said. “I believe that we will meet our goals in a timely and efficient way.”  

Environmental reviews and a risk assessment of the existing landfill site will come before the completion of the long-term strategy. In addition, a round of public meetings will be scheduled shortly for residents to give their views on waste management to AMEC consultants. 

Minister Bodden has said on several occasions that plant construction at the landfill in Cayman should begin by next summer, with works to be finalized by the end of 2016. Operations there were slated to begin in 2017.  

However, the minister said Wednesday that, based on advice and given all that needed to be done, it appeared doubtful that the initial project time line could be kept. Nonetheless, he promised that he would “drive the process as hard as I can.” “There is no greater priority to me,” he said. “At the same time, I have to be realistic and ensure all is done properly, including an environmental impact assessment that will be needed. The main thing is that it is being done and there is no turning back.”  

Minister Bodden, who acknowledged in a Legislative Assembly meeting held on Cayman Brac in April that he is no expert on the subject of waste management, said it would do no good for government to simply start issuing requests for proposals and seeking “piecemeal” bids for items such as waste removal, a new landfill, a recycling center or a waste-to-energy plant until it knows how the various aspects of such a system will operate.  

“Does this process take time? Yes, it does. However, I do not believe [it] means unwarranted delay,” Mr. Bodden said. Once the national strategy for waste is completed, the government will seek proposals and identify a “preferred project option,” he said.  

A strategic outline case for the project, released in May, recommended that plans for new waste management facilities be produced alongside a comprehensive national solid waste management strategy encompassing all three islands and embracing recycling and waste-to-energy technology. 

AMEC 

AMEC’s website for its U.K.-based operations states that the company delivers “environmental, engineering and consultancy services to customers across the public and private sectors.” The company boasts of specialists in planning, environmental, science, engineering, geology, chemistry, biology, economics and social development. In 2012, AMEC was awarded a contract with the North London Waste Authority for a waste services infrastructure.  

“AMEC has … extensive experience in waste management planning,” Health Ministry chief officer Jennifer Ahearn said. “With their assistance, I believe we can retain a strong sense of direction as we work to improve our solid waste system.” The Cayman Islands Public Works Department will retain its own project manager for the waste management overhaul. Jim Schubert, a veteran of the Canadian waste management industry, was recently hired to oversee “all aspects of project delivery for the proposed integrated solid waste management system.”  

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Mr. Bodden

1 COMMENT

  1. Is the current CI Govt combing through Caycompass’s forum and picking out the best suggestions and solutions from the comments made there and making an attempt to implement them ?

    It would certainly appear that way.

    The UK does have one of the best waste management systems in the world but…

    Another 1/2 million in consultant’s fees before a penny has been spent on actually fixing the problem ?

    Hmmmnnn?

    An attempt to get funding for this project from the UK Govt is an option for recouping some of these funds.

    After all, much of this consultants and contract fees (if a contract is awarded tp AMEC) will be going to enrich Her Majesty’s treasury.

  2. In 2006 when the post-Ivan scrap metal contract went out to tender the previous PPM administration was presented with a sustainable re-cycling option. A copy of it was also supplied to Cayman Net News.

    The proposed operation would have ended the dumping of reusable materials at Mt Trashmore plus it would have created jobs and earned revenue for CIG. It could have been Caymanian run and managed with a total set up cost potentially a lot less than 500K.

    What happened to it? It was ignored completely. The company proposing the scheme, which was based on well-established programmes in place elsewhere, didn’t even get an acknowledgement. When I ran the story in Net News we also couldn’t get any response from either CIG or the Minister concerned. They just didn’t want to know about it. I suspected at the time that the proposals were probably too simple and logical to be acceptable and this story does nothing to change that opinion.

    Seven years on and I’m now reading the 500K is being spent simply to employ consultants? I don’t want to interfere in domestic Caymanian politics but there’s something very screwy going on here.

  3. Bodden during Election Campaign

    We have realistic Sustainable solutions on the table for remediating the Georgetown Landfill in Site.

    If you elect me the will be No Waste Management Facility in Bodden Town

    Bodden after Election

    Take your offer and shove it Dart, there will be no dump in Bodden Town.

    We will start building the new plant by next year. Works will be finalized by 2016 with operations beginning in 2017.

    We have hired a committee to come up with a solution to the GeorgeTown Landfill. ( Huh?)

    The committee will need 2 years to come up with this solution ( Eh’ I though you already had a solution)

    We have hired a senior project Manager to deal with Caymans future rubbish. (EH’ I thought that’s what the committee was for)

    We have hired a consultancy firm to help plan Caymans waste management strategy. (Huh ?, My head spent all the way around)

    With all of these committees, Consultants and project managers we will be millions more in the hole before one bag of garbage is processed. How freaking hard can it be. And not one of these mention what is going to be done with the pile of trash in Georgetown all it mentions is future rubbish. Mr Bodden needs to swallow his pride and ask Dart to Cap the darn GT dump and built a new facility like he offered then we start an international recycling plan, it isn’t rocket science and shouldn’t cost all this money to come up with.

    I am finding it really hard to believe anything coming out of this man’s mouth.

    One other thing why does that water look so disgusting?

  4. What a waste of tax payers money when the private sector has already proposed the latest and greatest in waste technology that our country can afford.

  5. Jay, It is not a waste of Tax Payers money, That is Boddentownian Tax Payers. It’s only a waste to everyone else in the Country. Of which do not seem to matter in this case.

  6. Ricardo, I don’t want to rain on your parade but I live in the UK and it definitely does not have (quote) one of the best waste management systems in the world.

    In my area they’ve only just implemented a mixed re-cycling programme that has been operational in Los Angeles for years. In fact a lot of our recycling still ends up quietly dumped into landfill because although they take it away the contractors can’t actually recycle it all. It’s a numbers game. The material being dumped is conveniently deemed to be contaminated.

    Right now we have so-called re-cycling centres that are not only turning away things like wood, which can be used as biofuel in WTE, but are trying to charge people for dropping off reusable materials. The end result is that tons of re-cycling ends up in the general garbage.

    Bluntly, I suspect one of the problems here is actually that the Cayman Islands have been taking their lead on waste management from the UK.

  7. John

    I said the UK has one of the best waste management systems in the world…I should have clarified that statement by saying…for a country of its size and population..and I stand by that.

    I didn’t say it works perfectly because we know that it doesn’t but…

    Don’t come on here misleading readers that the non-system that has existed in Cayman for years and is now such a problem is modeled on anything in the UK.

    Maybe I should clarify that the CI Govt. implementing a system without the necessary legislation to make it work…WILL NOT WORK.

    You know the waste management laws in the UK as well as I do….and those laws is what makes the system work as well as it does.

    Put your garbage in the wrong bins, eg…and see if you will not be penalised by your local council.

    A waste management system is much more than just getting rid of your garbage..ok.

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