(WINDSOR, ON) – Last week, CBC Windsor reported that untreated human waste could be getting dumped into the Detroit River two or three times a month, when the city’s wastewater treatment plants get overwhelmed by storms. This happens more often on Windsor’s west side, due to much older wastewater infrastructure.
"It’s disgusting to think that in 2014 human waste is being dumped into our river due to inadequate infrastructure; this is truly astonishing,” said John Millson. “Windsor has the highest sewer surcharges in the province – 45% higher than the provincial average – and we still have to put up with an out-dated and often overwhelmed sewage system, that is resulting in E. Coli in our water," Millson concluded.
E. Coli is a potentially fatal bacteria that was a cause of multiple deaths in Walkerton, in 2001.
The problem of untreated waste getting dumped into the Detroit River is made worse by the 30-35% of households that have sewer systems dating back many decades. As a result of the out-dated infrastructure, waste is dumped directly into area waterways, untreated, according to the City of Windsor’s manager of environmental quality.
"Untreated human waste is being dumped right into the same waterways that are the source of our drinking water, and the $70 million needed to resolve this problem was spent on a fancy pool," said Millson. "I will focus on getting back to basics. When it comes to infrastructure, we need to make roads and sewers our top priority; cancel the pedestrian underpass and review the proposed city parking garage."