On Thursday, December 11th, CAWT Scientist Dr. Gordon Balch delivered a presentation at Arctic Change 2014, a 5-day conference in Ottawa that explored issues surrounding climate change and modernization in the Arctic.
Dr. Balch’s presentation was titled “Assessing the performance of cold climate natural wetlands in the treatment of domestic wastewater effluents in northern Canada” and was given during the Planning, Design and Assessment of Water Resources Systems in Northern Communities session. The presentation was developed out of earlier studiesin the Arctic carried out by the CAWT.
CAWT researchers sampled several natural wetlands in Canada’s Arctic to determine whether or not the wetlands provide any treatment benefits. As Dr. Balch presented on Thursday, research has shown that the wetlands do provide treatment benefit and should be considered as part of a hybridized approach to Northern wastewater strategies.
As new municipal wastewater regulations come into effect in Canada’s Northern regions and as climate change affects those areas, effectively planning, designing and developing Northern wastewater systems becomes increasingly important. Studies on cold-climate wastewater treatment systems like those undertaken by the CAWT can be valuable for policy-makers and residents in the Northern communities.