Sewage Pollution

Sewage Pollution

The Invisible Malignancy

Did you know that Greater Victoria dumps an average of 120 million liters of raw sewage into the Strait of Juan de Fuca EVERY SINGLE DAY? Victoria has become one of the highest sewage polluters within Canada. The issue of sewage disposal has become a source of controversy and has split our small community into two groups. One group strongly believes that the tidal currents flush away our waste and that said waste has negligible impact on the environment. Meanwhile the second group fights to inform the community of the incalculable damage being done to the ecosystems that inhabit the outfall locations. Ultimately, the debate simplifies to this: Is Victoria peeing away its environmental status?

Greater Victoria is equipped with two sewage outfalls. The first is located at Macaulay Point and the second at Clover Point. Both of these outfalls exit on the ocean floor, where the strong ocean currents flush away our waste. An environmental report, released on July 26, 2006 by MacDonald Environmental Services in Nanaimo, stated that the years of toilet usage has directly impacted our oceans and contaminated seabed sites. Unsafe toxin levels are harmful to all living organisms and potentially fatal to birds and aquatic life. Copper, mercury and lead are just a few of the heavy metals polluting our life source – water. Pressure to build reasonable treatment centers is increased by the push of the federal government. In the background, environmentalists pressure the CRD to consider a system of “resource recovery” plants. These plants extract clean water, heat and fuel from the sewage stream.

Currently Victoria's sewage streams through 6mm screens, removing large particles but leaving the rest to leak into our oceans. Not only is this harmful to our city's marine environment but extremely embarrassing to a large part of Victoria's local citizens. This mix of sewage includes water, human waste, pathogens...

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