1. USask Partners with Saskatoon to Study Stormwater

Stormwater goes into Saskatoon’s rivers untreated, so garbage introduced into the storm drain system means more pollution in the local river systems. Even more worrying are the chemical contaminants introduced into these systems that are invisible to the eye.

For this reason, a project was undertaken to evaluate the quality of stormwater that flows through Saskatoon’s drainage systems into local river systems. The project was designed by Dr. Markus Brinkmann, assistant professor at the University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) School of Environment and Sustainability (SENS), and the City of Saskatoon’s stormwater utility, wastewater treatment, and watershed protection units.

“Investment of public resources should consider many factors, including the best data,” said Angela Schmidt, a stormwater utility manager at the City of Saskatoon. “USask can help provide that. The better the information we have, the better our decisions and investments can be.” Read the full story here.

2. Natural Assets Help Communities Better Manage Flood Risk: Report

The latest research from the Municipal Natural Assets Initiative (MNAI) found that natural assets like wetlands, forests, and ponds help communities in Canada better manage flood risk.

“In Canada and beyond, urban infrastructure is in very poor shape,” said Roy Brooke, executive director of the Municipal Natural Assets Initiative (MNAI). “And every year, local governments face increasing pressures from growing populations, extreme weather conditions, and tightening budgets.”

“These latest MNAI research results demonstrate why more and more local governments are discovering that it makes sense to incorporate natural assets such as wetlands, forests, ponds, watersheds, or creeks into their asset management plans,” added Brooke. Read the full story here.

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3. Waterloo, Ontario Completes Stormwater Management Master Plan

Waterloo, Ontario’s council endorsed a stormwater management master plan environmental assessment on December 16, 2019.

Council also directed staff to file the notice of completion and mandatory 30-day public review period, as required by the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act.

Waterloo’s stormwater master plan has a 15-year outlook for the safe and effective management of stormwater runoff from its existing urban areas. The strategy will identify, protect, and enhance natural features, ecological function, and biophysical integrity. It will also manage risks, such as water pollution and flooding, through the establishment of environmental targets for water quality, water quantity, erosion, and infiltration. Read the full story here.

4. New Stormwater Facility to Protect Lake Simcoe From Excess Phosphorus

Federal funding to construct a stormwater treatment facility has been announced. The stormwater treatment facility will reduce runoff from Holland Marsh into Lake Simcoe and protect the lake’s watershed from excessive algae growth. This investment will result in better protection for the region’s aquatic habitats, ecosystem biodiversity, and protect drinking water sources.

“This project alone will reduce phosphorus runoff into Lake Simcoe by 40 per cent, cutting algae growth in the lake’s watershed, preserving fish habitat, and protecting a major source of drinking water,” said Catherine McKenna, minister of infrastructure and communities. “We simply have to invest now in infrastructure that protects Canadians, our environment, and the biodiversity of our ecosystems.” Read the full story here.

5. Curve Lake First Nation to Receive Funding for Green Infrastructure

Curve Lake First Nation will be receiving federal and provincial funding to support the improvement of drainage along Mississauga Road. This will help to reduce flooding on community roads, protect houses, and support proper stormwater management.

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“Improving Curve Lake First Nation’s catch basins and stormwater management system will help protect people and properties from flooding,” said Maryam Monsef, minister for women and gender equality and rural economic development. Monsef is also the member of parliament for Peterborough–Kawartha. Read the full story here.

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