Canadian Cities Dump Lots of Doo-Doo in Waterways

Port cities in Canada dump thousands of tons of virtually untreated sewage into bodies of water every year, according to a new report compiled by the Sierra Legal Defense Fund on behalf of three enviro groups. Montreal, it seems, dumps 950 million gallons of raw sewage into the St. Lawrence River every year. If you think that’s gross, well … you’re right. It really is. But it’s not so bad when you consider that Victoria dumps 9 billion gallons of entirely untreated sewage a year into the Pacific Ocean. Canada’s sewage-disposal standards are far behind those in the U.S. and Europe, said Margot Venton of Sierra Legal. An Environment Canada spokesperson said that Ottawa (the seat of Canada’s federal government, for all you clueless yanks) and the provinces are working together to develop a joint wastewater treatment program by 2006, with national standards — standards that will presumably frown on dumping billions of gallons of untreated poop, along with oil, grease, cyanide, and who knows what else, into waterways.