President’s message, spring 2019

New councils, new challenges

Ontario’s new councils face new challenges in 2019. Under the proposed Bill 66, changes to the Planning Act and other legislation will have wide-ranging effects on municipal planning, development and growth. Several of those proposed changes could present significant challenges and even threats to maintaining our drinking water safety. The Ontario government has also announced a review of regional governments across the province, suggesting changes in governance and even amalgamation. These could affect how municipalities manage and deliver services.

On top of that, new technologies are being developed to handle emerging problems like microplastics and pharmaceuticals in our water.

Everyone involved in the oversight and maintenance of our water and wastewater systems – both elected officials and staff – needs to stay up-to-date and informed to be ready to adapt and change to accommodate both legislative and technological developments. Peer support and cooperation are more important than ever.

The OMWA’s upcoming 2019 Educations Days in Barrie, Sudbury, and Niagara Falls offer effective opportunities for staff and elected officials to network, to learn, and to share their ideas with peers from around the province. Please visit our events page to find out how you can participate, register, and stay current on changes that affect your own water systems.

President’s message, summer 2018

It sometimes seems that every week a challenge to our drinking water emerges. How can you stay informed about the threats and solutions? Easily – if you’re an OMWA member. We keep members informed about water-related issues and events through our twice-weekly newswire, through our website, and in our upcoming Education Days.

Challenges can come from unexpected sources. Like our clothes and household cleansers. We’ve reported many stories about microplastics and nanoplastics – microscopic bits of non-degradable plastic that scientists now realize pervade our environment.

They’re a new and difficult challenge for water professionals.

Plastic is so ubiquitous that it finds its way into everything around us, even our drinking water. One study found plastic in 85 per cent of tap water samples taken from a dozen countries (in the USA researchers found plastic in 94 per cent of their samples).

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