Municipal dumping questioned
Ottawa Riverkeeper petitions for more water testing
A petition has been launched asking municipalities along the Ottawa River to inform their citizens more often of the river’s water quality. Petitioners also want residents notified when untreated water is discharged into the river so swimmers understand what they are swimming in.
Audrey Bureau, city councillor for Aylmer ward, supports this petition, initiated by the Ottawa Riverkeeper as part of its “We Want to Know” campaign. The organization insists on the public’s right to know when sewage and storm water bypasses treatment and overflows into the Ottawa River. The Riverkeeper emphasizes that untreated municipal water is one of the main sources of pollution in the Ottawa River. The petition now has 3,000 signatures; the aim is 10,000. The organization is dedicated to a healthy and ecologically-sustainable river for the good of all.
“The water quality at Parc des Cèdres should be tested more than once a week,” says Audrey Bureau. “Our water quality should be tested every day, as Ottawa does.” Presently, water is tested once a week as per the beach environment program of Quebec’s environment ministry.
Parc des Cèdres beach
The Parc des Cèdres beach was closed July 13 because bacteriological analysis showed high levels of harmful bacteria. It was closed again on July 26 following major rainfalls. Swimming water quality is rated from A to D, with A being excellent (rare) and D polluted (no swimming). Water-current circulation is another problem faced by Aylmer bathers.