News Briefs: ​Wastewater Study Shows How Much Cannabis Canadians Consume

Also in this week's water and wastewater news, a boil-water advisory is lifted in Anchorage, Alaska, after a 7.0-magnitude earthquake rocks the city

Statistics Canada has released statistics from its wastewater-based epidemiology program showing that Canadian citizens consume between 400 and 1,600 tons of cannabis per year.

Wastewater samples were taken from Halifax, Montreal, Toronto, Edmonton and Vancouver between March and August and lab workers analyzed metabolites originating from tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

The study showed that Halifax has an above-average rate of cannabis use and that it’s increasing over time.

Earthquake Ruptures Water Mains, Taints Water in Anchorage

A boil-water advisory was in effect for Anchorage, Alaska, after a 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck the city Nov. 30 rupturing more than two dozen water mains.

Water customers were reporting reddish-brown water coming out of their taps after the quake, and officials put the boil-water notice in place as a precaution.

While the water is still murky, the advisory has been lifted, according to Anchorage Water & Wastewater Utility officials.

“The Anchorage Water & Wastewater Utility has completed water quality sampling and bacteriological testing throughout the Anchorage drinking water distribution system,” the utility reports in a press release. “Findings from those tests have confirmed that the water system is operating normally and was not contaminated as a result of the earthquake. As a result, AWWU is lifting the precautionary boil-water advisory.”

Utility crews and contractors are responding to the breaks in the water mains.

San Diego Borrows $614 Million From EPA to Finance Water Recycling Projects

The City of San Diego, California, accepted a loan of $614 million from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to help it finance the first phase of its Pure Water San Diego water recycling initiative. The city estimates Phase 1 will cost around $1.4 billion and will break ground in 2019.

Included in the first phase will be upgrades to the existing water facilities and the construction of new facilities. The following phase will add new water pipelines and facilities in central San Diego and South Bay.

State Directs Newark to Look Into Plant's Corrosion Treatment Process

Official documents from the City of Newark, New Jersey, have surfaced showing that the engineering study that led to the city distributing filters for lead contamination may have been limited to only one of the city’s two treatment plants.

The state is now asking Newark to gauge whether treatment processes at the other plant are sufficiently protecting water from lead contamination. Samples of residential tap water from that plant have shown elevated lead levels.

When the lead problem was originally discovered in the city, Newark had blamed aging lead service lines, but later discovered that lead was leaching into water due to ineffective corrosion treatment at the city’s Pequannock plant, according to New York Times.


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