A new report released Monday by the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) said more than 1,700 provincial boil water advisories are currently in effect across Canada.The report noted that, as of Feb. 29, 2008, there were boil-water advisories in place in 93 First Nations communities. “These are not included, however, in the

1766 advisories now in place elsewhere in Canada,” the report said.

“Advisories are intended to be a precautionary measure in the public health tool kit, but given that some have been in place for at least 5 years, they are apparently being used as a band-aid substitute for treatment,” the report noted.

Gord Steeves, president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities said that municipalities cannot pay the approximately $31 billion it will collectively cost to upgrade water and wastewater treatment infrastructure across the country.

The survey indicated that, as of Mar. 31, 2008, there were 1766 boil water advisories across Canada in small towns, cities and townships, or in neighbourhoods, trailer parks and business sites. The totals by province and territory:

British Columbia – 530 
Alberta – 13 
Saskatchewan – 126 
Manitoba – 59 
Ontario – 679 
Quebec – 61 
New Brunswick – 2 
Nova Scotia – 67 
Prince Edward Island – 0 
Newfoundland – 228 
Yukon – 0 
Northwest Territories – 1 
Nunavut – 0

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