New Sewer Monitoring Innovation Makes Kingston Leader in Protecting Public Health, Great Lakes — Media Release
Kingston, ONTARIO – Utilities Kingston’s new real-time sewer monitoring system, a first in Ontario, is now live. The system alerts residents when untreated sewage overflows from waterfront pipes into Lake Ontario. It uses technology developed by Utilities Kingston to meet the needs of people who swim or boat in the city.
“This is the gold standard for sewer monitoring and public notice,” says Mark Mattson, President of Swim Drink Fish Canada. “It gives people the information they need to protect their health after an overflow. More importantly, it invites people to connect with the lake when water quality is good. Every city in Ontario should have a system like this.”
Kingston, like Toronto, Hamilton, Ottawa and other older cities, relies on a combined sewer system. Stormwater and sewage combine during wet weather and raw sewage flows into nearby water. When this happens, bacteria levels soar and water does not meet government guidelines for public health or environmental protection. Water quality remains poor for about 48 hours after an overflow.
Work is being done to upgrade the sewage system and eliminate sewage spills entirely. “In the meantime, these real-time alerts are the only way to protect public health and educate the public about the need infrastructure investment,” says Mattson.
Lake Ontario Waterkeeper, a program of Swim Drink Fish Canada, has been calling on the City of Toronto to implement a public notice system to alert residents about sewage spills in Canada’s largest city. Sewage spills happen in Toronto more frequently than in Kingston.
Know Before You Go Website - Utilities Kington
Utilities Kingston unveils real-time sewage overflow monitoring and notification system - Mark Mattson's blog
Kingston launches really cool sewage overflow alerts website - Krystyn Tully's statement
For media inquiries:
Krystyn Tully, Vice President | Lake Ontario Waterkeeper
(416) 579-1731, firstname.lastname@example.org
Swim Drink Fish Canada is a national charity working for swimmable, drinkable, fishable water. It launched Lake Ontario Waterkeeper near Kingston in 2001 and has been working to protect the Kingston region from sewage pollution for more than a decade. www.waterkeeper.ca.