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Water

Federal Govt stands down wastewater pollution regulations

The federal government has reached an equivalency agreement with Quebec over wastewater pollution regulations intended to protect fish. Under the federal Fisheries Act, the federal government can agree NOT to apply its regulations in a province, if it agrees that provincial regulations in that province provide "equivalent" protection. A similar agreement was reached in December for the [...]

Planning for drought and drinking water in Ontario

Climate change is worsening flooding but it will also bring faster spring runoffs, hotter summers, more evaporation and droughts. What will that mean for Ontario's drinking water supply? Source water protection committees are trying to plan ahead. According to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change Glen Murray's  Annual Report on Drinking Water 2014: Under the [...]

Will Toronto go to full cost recovery in Surcharge Agreements?

In 2008, Toronto's Auditor General’s Report on Protecting Water Quality and Preventing Pollution recommended that Toronto should charge industries the full cost of sampling, testing and treating their high strength sewage. In November 2012, Toronto Council considered, and rejected, the idea, settling for a small partial increase, presumably worried about driving more industry out of the [...]

More cities adopting stormwater fees: you pave, you pay

In 2011,  we wrote about the innovative stormwater fee adopted by Kitchener, Ontario, following English and American precedents. Instead of funding storm water management through fees for municipal water, which penalizes heavy water users such as laundries, these municipalities fund the cost of managing stormwater through taxes on those who create storm water management problems by having large [...]

Great Lakes Protection Act reintroduced (again)

As promised in Minister Murray's mandate letter, Ontario's provincial government has reintroduced the Great Lakes Protection Act.  If passed, the Act would: Help fight climate change, reduce harmful algal blooms, and protect wetlands and other coastal areas. Monitor and report on the health of the lakes. Bring people together to take action on priority issues. Build on [...]

Ontario proposes new Drinking Water Standards

The Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) is proposing to tighten the permissible levels of some contaminants in piped drinking water, and to adopt standards for other as yet unregulated chemicals. MOECC is holding a Regulatory Consultation until February 16, 2005. The changes will amend Ontario Regulation 169/03—Drinking Water Standards under the Safe Drinking Water Act. These [...]