September 15, 2016

Kilmer Statement on Local Canadian Government Approval of Site for Wastewater Treatment Plant

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Representative Derek Kilmer (D-WA) released the following statement after the Capital Regional District in British Columbia approved a plan to build a sewage treatment plant at McLoughlin Point in Esquimalt and commit to additional wastewater management solutions. The Victoria area, home to 300,000 people, has pumped effluent into the Strait of Juan de Fuca for years.

“This week was a positive step toward Canada cleaning up its mess,” said Kilmer. “Now we need to make sure that the British Columbian and Canadian governments step up to the plate and follow through with the investments needed to open this plant. For too many years, raw sewage from Canada has continued to be dumped in the Strait of Juan de Fuca. I’ll continue to make sure our Canadian partners reach a lasting solution so this does not impact our shared waters any longer.”

From his first term in office Kilmer has sought to make progress in stopping the dumping of raw sewage from Canada into the waters across the Washington state. In July he authored a provision in the report accompanying the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill for Fiscal Year 2016 that encouraged the U.S. State Department to work with Canadian counterparts on a solution to the sewage problem and ensure Canada lives up to its international commitments in the area. 

Last March, Kilmer urged Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to find a solution to the sewage problem. His comments came during a meeting between the Prime Minister and seven members of the House of Representatives. In 2015, Kilmer authored language asking the State Department to work with Canadian counterparts on a solution to the sewage problem. He previously led members of the Washington state delegation in an effort to call on the British Columbia Premier to move forward in addressing the issue, pointing out the risk to fisheries, businesses, and healthy waters.