Editorial: Local issue goes national

All six candidates in the Nov. 26 Victoria federal byelection have offered their thoughts on sewage treatment for the Capital Region.

All six candidates in the Nov. 26 Victoria federal byelection have offered their thoughts on sewage treatment for the Capital Region, in one forum or another in recent weeks.

If you missed hearing it in person, you can read their views on the issue on this newspaper’s website or printed in our candidate survey (page A10).

It’s not surprising that all of the candidates have hitched their campaign wagons to the do-it-now or wait-till-it-gets-bad camps on sewage treatment. It’s an acknowledgement by would-be MPs and their promoters that public awareness on the issue is as high as it has been since pro-treatment character Mr. Floatie achieved international notoriety.

A cynic might say those trying to gain office are simply taking advantage of the momentum being built by local politicians who question the logic of building a nearly $800-million facility, rather than holding off until damage to the marine environment becomes significant.

On the other hand, an optimist – one who also questions the decision to spend that kind of money on secondary treatment – might say it’s a good thing if a broader light can be shed on the marine science that has seemingly been ignored in this whole affair.

Five years ago, we encouraged all affected levels of government to give the science a more thorough evaluation. We continue to hold the view that research on the impact to the marine environment is incomplete.

With party leaders and other influential MPs campaigning with Victoria byelection candidates the past couple of weeks – all but Green leader Elizabeth May are from back east – we hope the whys of sewage treatment gain a higher profile in Ottawa in the near future.

That may not prompt the Conservative government to rethink its ban on dumping untreated sewage into the ocean, but it may buy cash-strapped Capital Region residents some time before we have to start shelling out for a treatment facility.

Just Posted

Mural artist Paul Archer will soon begin work on a piece on the rear of a building at 100 Burnside Road West. (Gorge Tillicum Community Association)
Back of Burnside building in Saanich to feature mural of hope and positivity

Artist Paul Archer says subject will inspire memories, depict children’s future, sunshine, flowers

Victoria Truth Centre and Long-term Inmates Now in the Community (L.I.N.C.) Society are hoping to replicate in Langford the format used on Emma’s Farm in Mission, pictured here. (Patrick Penner/Black Press Media)
Victoria Truth Centre hopes to grow transformative justice in Langford

Purchase proposal would see offenders, survivors and families work on organic vegetable farm

Tyson Muzzillo, regional manager of BC Cannabis Store, welcomes shoppers to their Uptown location, opening on June 16. (Megan Atkins-Baker/News Staff)
Government-run cannabis store opening at Saanich’s Uptown

BC Cannabis Store the first for government in Greater Victoria, 27th in province

The stretch of trail north of Royal Bay Secondary connecting to Painters Trail at Murray’s Pond will be closed temporarily this week for invasive species removal. (Black Press Media file photo)
Colwood trail behind Royal Bay Secondary temporarily closed for invasive species removal

Cloure in effect from 9 a.m. Wednesday to 10 a.m. Friday this week

Proposed design for the Topaz Park bike and skate park elements. (Courtesy City of Victoria)
Victoria requesting feedback on Topaz Park redesign

Public input now being taken for proposed skate, bike park ideas

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

(Black Press Media file)
Dirty money: Canadian currency the most germ-filled in the world, survey suggests

Canadian plastic currency was found to contain 209 bacterial cultures

(pixabay file shot)
B.C. ombudsperson labels youth confinement in jail ‘unsafe,’ calls for changes

Review states a maximum of 22 hours for youth, aged 12 from to 17, to be placed in solitary

Eleonore Alamillo-Laberge, 6, reads a book in Ottawa on Monday, June 12, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Parents will need to fight ‘COVID learning slump’ over summer: B.C. literacy experts

Parents who play an active role in educating their children this summer can reverse the slump by nearly 80%, says Janet Mort

The border crossing on Highway 11 in Abbotsford heading south (file)
Western premiers call for clarity, timelines on international travel, reopening rules

Trudeau has called Thursday meeting, premiers say they expect to leave that meeting with a plan

The B.C. government’s vaccine booking website is busy processing second-dose appointments, with more than 76 per cent of adults having received a first dose. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations stable for Tuesday

108 new confirmed cases, 139 in hospital, 39 in intensive care

Cowichan Tribes man Adrian Sylvester is worried that he was targetted by a trailer hitch thrown from a vehicle. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Tribes man worried he was target of trailer hitch

Adrian Sylvester says no one has reported a missing hitch after one nearly hit him

Graeme Roberts, who was mayor of Nanaimo from 1984-86, died this month at age 89. (Photo courtesy Nanaimo Community Archives)
City of Nanaimo flags at half-mast as former mayor Graeme Roberts dies at 89

‘Giant-killer’ beat out Frank Ney in mayoral election in 1984

Most Read