What's going on?
Many boaters and out-of-country boaters dump their vessel’s septic tanks into our rivers and lakes with impunity. Moreover, the province lacks the resources and regulatory oversight for toilet, sanitation inspections, and certifications for boaters in Ontario. This lack of oversight leads to leaks and faulty or old Marine Sanitary Devices (MSD) being used on our waterways. Historically, there has been no evidence of any enforcement on illegal Blackwater Dumping into Ontario’s lakes.
With Fines for Blackwater dumping as low as $350—there is very little deterring boaters from dumping their waste into lakes and rivers. In Ontario, there is little to no evidence of a recreational boater ever being charged for Blackwater dumping in the past 20 years. With Ontario claiming nearly 10% of the world's accessible freshwater, our goal is to make Blackwater Dumping a thing of the past.
What are other countries doing?
Other countries, such as the United States, state that it is illegal to dump any untreated sewage in inland or coastal waterways. The fines average about $2,000 for Blackwater Dumping and go up to $10,000 due to classification as a hazardous waste. In Europe, dumping is excluded to 12 miles offshore—with a prohibition on any dumping on inland waters—with fines ranging even higher.
What are we doing about it?
Ontario's waterways deserve the best and the best protection against Blackwater Dumping. We are calling to increase the fines to a range between $5,000 and $10,000 to ensure our beautiful site of Georgian Bay remains that way. Furthermore, we are looking to ensure that Inspections and Certifications are mandatory and performed regularly—any vessel with a faulty system should be fined and removed from the waterway. We are also looking to ensure that avenues of dumping in a safe manner are promoted and maximized to further ensure Blackwater Dumping does not occur.
How can you help?
You can help this campaign by donating, sharing our efforts, and volunteering. Through your action—you are ensuring that Blackwater Dumping will no longer occur and that Georgian Bay, our great lakes, and our freshwater are no longer at threat of being polluted by this practice. Thank you for supporting our campaign.
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