Nov 09, 2015

By Michael Kramer

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Montreal has the green light from Environment Minister Catherine McKenna – to discharge eight billion litres of untreated sewage into the St. Lawrence River.

But only if certain conditions are met.

In Paris today, McKenna told reporters she’s asking Montrael to implement several measures – before dumping the waste water.

They include – monitoring the discharge and improving emergency-planning clean-up measures.

McKenna says the operation can begin as soon as the conditions are met – and must be completed by the 5th of December.

Mayor Denis Coderre has said the dump of untreated sewage is necessary – because the city must temporarily shut down a large sewer – which feeds sewage to a treatment facility.

He says alternative solutions would be too costly.

The discharge plan was suspended in mid-October by the previous Conservative government – which appointed an independent panel of experts to determine if the waste water would be acutely toxic.

The panel’s report was released on Friday – and said the risks of waiting – were greater than the city’s plan to dump the sewage  into the river.


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