Oyku Cicek Butun Staff Reporter, The Pawprint
Exceeding levels of lead were found in major Canadian water supplies. The lead levels were found to be similar to the water found in Flint Michigan, USA, during the water crisis of 2015. An investigation revealed one-third of 12,000 samples taken between 2014 – 2018 exceeded national safety guidelines of 5 parts per billion.
The number is scary when evaluated considering the fact that Canada has the third-largest per-capita freshwater reserve in the world. The lead contamination in the supply has been linked to low I.Q. of children with lead contamination in the world.
The investigation conducted by 120 journalists from 10 media outlets and 9 universities in partnership with the Institute for Investigative Journalism found a third exceeded the safe limit of 5ppb, 18% were over the US limit of 15ppb. Reporters also tested the drinking water in older homes in 32 cities across the country, taking samples from residents who volunteered. Out of 260 homes sampled, about 39% exceeded the current federal guideline.
The biggest source of lead in Canada’s drinking water is antiquated pipes and public service lines that connect people’s homes to the main water supply. A government report from 2017 estimated that about 500,000 homes across the country were affected.