September 13-20, 2004

Atlantic ministers pledge leadership on national strategy for wastewater effluent

HALIFAX, NS-Environment ministers and deputy ministers from the four Atlantic provinces, meeting at White Point Beach Lodge in Queen's County, agreed to work together to provide regional leadership and co-ordination for the development of a national wastewater effluent strategy. Nova Scotia has been actively working on a national strategy as a part of a development committee established in December 2003 through the Canadian Council of Ministers of Environment (CCME). While Nova Scotia will still continue to participate on the committee, Environment Minister Kerry Morash believes a regional approach is critical. "We face many similar issues when it comes to managing municipal wastewater effluent. Coastal protection, financing new infrastructure, and serving rural populations just for starters. Regional co-ordination is one way to ensure we're sharing best practices, providing the best services and ensuring the greatest measure of protection for our environment," Morash explained. The ministers also discussed a number of other issues relating to the need for a more collaborative relationship with federal government agencies that share responsibility with the provinces for environmental protection. These included updates on the review of the Canadian Environmental Protection Act, federal Bill C-34 on Marine Pollution/Enforcement, and Atlantic solid waste issues. The next CCME meeting is scheduled to take place in early November 2004.
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