Lead levels in some Canadian tap water said to be as high as Flint
When we think of water issues in Canada, problems in Indigenous communities often come to mind.
But a recent investigation done by journalists at multiple outlets reveals that the tap water in several Canadian cities is contaminated with lead.
The investigation included 260 water tests across the country, and 39 per cent of samples exceeded federal guidelines.
Exposure to lead can have seriously detrimental effects. It can lead to developmental delays and learning difficulties in children, and can even cause miscarriages for pregnant women.
“[Lead] has been linked with not only IQ deficits in children, but spontaneous abortion and miscarriage in women, pre-term birth in women, hypertension in adults, premature deaths from cardiovascular disease in adults."— Laura Hensley (@LolaHensley) November 4, 2019
Incredible work by my colleagues https://t.co/zN9gVCPKJK
Poor infrastructure is one of the factors that caused the problem. Some pipes and plumbing fixtures are made of lead, and as they deteriorate, they can corrode and enter the water supply.
So now Canada has high levels of lead in our tap water all across the country? GREAT!!— Yee haw (Bre) (@DracoWolves) November 4, 2019
While cities like Flint, MI, in the U.S. have received significant attention for issues with its drinking water, the investigation concluded that the problem could actually be worse in some Canadian cities.
After reading this important story, I will be testing for lead in my well water. I dug out a test kit I picked up at my local lab a few months ago. $83.25 is the lowest cost package that includes lead. I wonder how many well owners in #NS will be able to afford it? #TaintedH20 pic.twitter.com/GckXVNn7gv— Rhonda Brown (@RhondaBrown5) November 4, 2019
In Montreal, Mayor Valerie Plante told Global News that the city would spend over $500 million to remove public lead pipes.
Drinking water standards differ by province, and Ontario is the only province that enforces water treatment in its municipalities.
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