Thursday, February 20, 2020


There are three locations in regards to our drinking water. There is our raw water as both groundwater as well as surface water namely the Grand River. Then there is our treated drinking water that exits the various water treatment plants in Kitchener, Waterloo and Cambridge. Lastly there is the water in our distribution systems which is under municipal control. Unfortunately the municipalities are solely focused on bacterial removal. This mostly means dosing various local systems with additional chlorine when required to keep bacterial growth minimized.

With the exception of bacteria (Total Coliform & E.Coli) we do not receive any information from the Region of Waterloo concerning raw water contaminants. This includes solvents, pesticides, herbicides, salt, NDMA, PFAS (per & poly fluorinated alkyl substances) and other industrial chemicals.

Our water treatment plants successfully remove an awful lot of these various contaminants although certainly not everything. They do not remove salt in the water which can be very bad for people with heart conditions. They reduce but certainly do not eliminate solvents particularly trichloroethylene (TCE). They also reduce but not eliminate Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Round Up. Unfortunately our treatment systems can also produce Trihalomethanes, TrihaloAcetic Acids and even NDMA depending on the treatment used. All of these have negative health implications. As worrisome is the list of various industrial and petroleum based contaminants testing results that are not even published in the Region's Annual (Drinking Water) Reports such as toluene, xylenes and NDMA.

Finally we have the municipalities area of influence, the distribution system. They are not doing a good job. Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge and Elmira just like most distribution systems throughout the country initially used both lead and asbestos pipe to distribute our drinking water. Exactly how stupid are they and our authorities over the last 100 years? My recollection is that some scholars have actually partially blamed the fall of the Roman Empire on mass lead poisoning from their lead water pipes used for distributing water obtained from Aquaducts. Currently in Elmira there is still both lead and asbestos pipes carrying water to homes. That is both disgusting and disgraceful.

No comments:

Post a Comment