Opinion: Canada needs to restore and enhance protection of our waters.
Yesterday, in my blog Freedom of Research, I spoke to an important step in fixing Canada after our Stephen Harper Government. While the inner workings of how science is done, to benefit society, more critical facets need immediate attention. A top priority is water protection.
We must restore and enhance protections for our waters, and habitats, of lakes, rivers, wetlands and oceans. Clean water is critical to so many aspects of a healthy environment and public. With pending stresses from climate change and extreme weather events, Canada needs to plan for future requirements that will help protect our waters.
We need to also focus on clean drinking water and drinking water safety. The human impacts on water sources can't be ignored. Canada needs to enter a new era in water treatment. New innovations in generating green energy from waste, new innovations for eliminating toxics and human-drug byproduct pollution.
Water nourishes us. We have the tools to make our waters clean in the future. We will need new tools to help eliminate plastic. Our Great Lakes are more polluted by plastic than our oceans. This needs to change. Microplastic may enhance toxic algae blooms. More research is required.
Climate change will also have many impacts, especially droughts and lowered water quality. I would like to welcome Catherine McKenna as Canada's new Minister of Climate. She has quite the challenge. Good luck at COP21, Catherine!
Moving forwards, Canada must also respect our Treaties with First Nations. Clean water is a right, so let's make it right.