In 2012, the Agriculture department constructed a biobed on the grounds of the Community Services Building as a new method for disposing of herbicides from their weed control program.
This is Alberta's first biobed, and one of only five biobeds in Canada.
The biobed is a herbicide disposal system that is essentially an organic filter system. This contained system uses a natural mixture of topsoil, compost and straw to digest herbicides. The mixture provides an ideal habitat for microbes to break down the pesticides to the point where they pose no threat of contamination.
Biobeds are an ideal solution for herbicide disposal as they are relatively inexpensive and very easy to use. They also significantly speed up the natural process of breakdown of the herbicides.
Testing from 2014 shows more than a 99% reduction in concentration of pesticides tested for in the rinsate.
The County's Agriculture department anticipates that this application will be of great interest for local farm producers as an alternative method of herbicide disposal.
A working model of the County of Grande Prairie's biobed is available for the public to view at the Community Services Building.