We’re not wet behind the ears, DoK

This isn’t purification of water, rather the exchanging of pollutants

Dear Editor,

Recently the District of Kitimat gave us citizens a warning about the poor water quality!

Having lived here for 65 years, I can assure newcomers to town – this isn’t the first time this warning has been issued.

In the past council and the administration said the decision was under the guidelines contained in the provincial health authority’s water quality report and that we simply need to boil our water. Of course, when the restrictions are lifted, nothing changes.

Some causes of the pollution in our water continue to exist as a result of poor judgement by those in charge of our city water supply. I suggest that council takes a serious look at the quality of our water, which is a serious health issue, instead of just saying “it’s OK by today’s standards.”

God knows who invented those standards – treatment of the river water involves ground filtration and the addition of various chemicals to the water.

This isn’t purification of water, rather the exchanging of pollutants. A water expert sits in a laboratory replacing natural pollutants with the chemical pollutants, after which it’s declared drinkable. Where is the commitment to clean air, clean water?

Before the DoK conducts expensive studies and spends more money to treat our drinking water they should first make an effort to correct historic mistakes, by relocating the landfill and Cable Car’s septic fields above the town’s water intake, the legacy of one of our previous administrations.

After 40 years of being saturated with human and animal waste, every time it rains continually some of that waste ends up in the Kitimat River, above the DoK’s water intakes.

A member of an advisory committee challenged me on this, saying the leaking of waste into the Kitimat River has a minimal effect on the quality of water ‘because it gets diluted in the river.’

Considering the size of Cable Car and its relatively close location to the water intake, I disagreed – diluting waste doesn’t necessarily mean the water is purified or clean.

In closing I suggest council and administration engage with Cable Car property owners to install a second sewage tank to stop the septic overflow into the river – offering them a deal they can’t refuse.

PS: as we approach that time of the year when we have low cloud, mist, heavy rain, fog and snow obscuring the vision of light aircraft pilots, I have to ask why the communication towers next to the water tanks, the public safety building and the Telus tower don’t have warning lights.

Leon Dumstrey-Soos

Kitimat

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