This month of The Catch features stories from our partners in the Great Lakes News Collaborative. The collaborative’s investigation of the cost of water in the Great Lakes region was the focus of the latest episode.
Toronto-based journalist Andrew Reeves discusses a piece he wrote for Great Lakes Now about the history and current issues in Canadian water infrastructure. Similarly to the United States, Canada’s water system saw a substantial drop in funding in the decades after World War II. However, in 2000, when a drinking water tragedy hit the city of Walkerton, Ontario, officials took action and began to invest in infrastructure and safety.
“That really kicked the provincial government and local governments into realizing that the unthinkable could actually happen and that drinking water wouldn’t be safe for anyone to consume,” Reeves said. “And so after Walkerton, you see a dramatic increase in the volume of investment that was made, not just in drinking water, but in waste water as well.”