Better understanding of sewage project needed

Re: Sewage forum comes too late (Our View, June 1)

Your editorial justly recognizes the members of ARESST who have taken it upon themselves to educate the public about our sewage system. This group arose because the CRD has inadequately informed the public on the science of sewage treatment.

Members of the CRD’s Core Area Liquid Waste Management Committee have stated many times that land-based treatment is a moral issue whose time has come despite the failure of the 1992 referendum.

Little has changed since 1992, other than a federally and provincially adopted environmental order that will impose a fine of $15,000 per day if further treatment is not undertaken by 2016.

When you put this fine into the context of a $1-billion expenditure you realize that it is a toothless threat that would take the equivalent of 182 years to pay. In other words, there is no need to rush into this project while we hold upper-level governments  accountable for their decisions.

Citizens demand the CRD document the efficacy of the existing sewage system and take their findings to the environment ministries. To date, any formal presentation suggesting we have a unique marine environment to efficiently disperse effluent has been suspiciously absent.

Richard Atwell

Saanich