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IJC Recommends Focus on Human Health Concerns for Great Lakes

Posted on March 9, 2011
The International Joint Commission provided 32 recommendations for action at the federal, state, provincial and local levels of government in its 15th biennial report, released today (find it here). In particular, the recommendations focus on the need for the United States and Canada to approve a revised Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (GLWQA) that addresses threats to water quality to prevent or reduce their impact on human and ecological health. Beach closings, harmful algal growth, contaminated groundwater and alien invasive species are examples of threats that are of greatest concern in the nearshore zone where most people [...]

McGill Researchers Develop Silver Nano Filter

Posted on March 7, 2011
Chemistry researchers at Montreal's McGill University have developed a key step towards making a cheap, portable, paper-based filter coated with silver nanoparticles to be used to prevent the spread of disease in emergency situations, such as floods and earthquakes. “Silver has been used to clean water for a very long time. The Greeks and Romans kept their water in silver jugs,” says Derek Gray, a professor in McGill’s Department of Chemistry. But though silver is used to get rid of bacteria in a variety of settings, from bandages to antibacterial socks, no one has used it systematically to clean water before. “It’s [...]

Quebec Woman Honoured for Water Work in Mali

Posted on February 10, 2011
Today, at the 2011 Canadian Edition of its Women of the Earth Awards, the Yves Rocher Foundation honoured three women for their commitment to preserving the environment. Among them was Nicole Meunier of Mascouche, Quebec, who began Puits Eau Mali in 2008. The organization's mission is to "offer water where there isn't any." It works in Africa to drill wells that prevent contamination of water and the water table. In addition to providing direct access to drinking water, these wells allow villagers to create communal vegetable gardens (and prevent sand silting in the long term). Since 2008, five wells have been drilled, benefiting [...]

Xebec Turns Sewage into Clean Energy

Posted on February 9, 2011
Blainville, Quebec-based Xebec Adsorption using its new technology to purify biogas from a wastewater treatment facility in California. The new biogas purification plant at the Hale Avenue Resource Recovery Facility in Escondido, CA is a joint project of the city, Southern California Gas Co. and Xebec. Xebec has provided the engineering, procurement, construction and management for this US$2.7 million project. "Using technology, the city of Escondido has the potential to produce enough natural gas to serve 1,200 homes, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and lowering the overall dependence on fossil fuel derived [...]

St. Lawrence: A Prozac Nation for Fish?

Posted on January 21, 2011
Around one in four Montrealers take some kind of antidepressant, and according to new research, the drugs are passing into the waterways and affecting fish. Led by Dr. Sébastien Sauvé and PhD candidate André Lajeunesse, a University of Montreal research team has found that the drugs accumulate in fish tissues and are affecting brain activity. Sauvé has also been involved in studies on and in waterways. “Montreal has a very basic sewage system--the city basically only removes solids, there's no disinfecting of the water,” Sauvé explains [...]

H2O Innovation Wins $2.4M in Contracts

Posted on January 17, 2011
Quebec-based H2O Innovation Inc. has been awarded new contracts totalling $2.4 million. These contracts will see the company provide custom-built water treatment systems and equipment to industrial, mining, and municipal end-users in Canada and the United States. As part of these contracts the company will design, fabricate, and deliver an industrial process water production system for a U.S. energy and power generation company as well as a drinking water production system for an Ontario mining customer. The company will also design, build, and deliver a 150,000 GPD Bio-Brane wastewater treatment system to a First Nation community [...]

Holiday News Roundup

Posted on January 3, 2011
Happy New Year! A brief news roundup following a two-week break: 1. Shortly after the Royal Society of Canada released its oil sands report and just before the holidays began, Minister of the Environment John Baird released the results of the independent report on the oilsands chaired by Elizabeth Dowdeswell and an advisory panel originally appointed by former minister Jim Prentice. "For too long, we have heard concerns about the quality of the water downstream of the oil sands. People have argued about what impact oil sands development has had on water quality, but we have been unsure about whether we had the data we needed to [...]

GENIVAR Acquires Aquapraxis

Posted on December 10, 2010
Montreal's GENIVAR engineering firm has acquired Laval-based Aquapraxis Inc., which offers recognized expertise in the areas of urban hydrology, urban networks and water resource management. "This is very exciting for Aquapraxis, as we now have access to the full national and international network of GENIVAR. Joining GENIVAR gives us the opportunity to add additional depth to an already excellent team in the areas of urban hydrology and water resources" said Gilles Rivard, president of Aquapraxis. [...]

Research Chair Honoured

Posted on November 17, 2010
Rajeshwar Dayal Tyagi, Canada Research Chair in Bioconversion of Waste Water and Sewage Sludge into High-Value-Added Products, has won the International Water Association's (IWA) 2010 Global Honour Award for Applied Research. Dr. Tyagi, who holds his chair at the Université du Québec's Institut national de recherche scientifique, won the honour in recognition of his research team's work in developing a new process to turn wastewater and sewage sludge into bioproducts such as herbicides, pesticides and bioplastics. The award is given every two years to distinguished projects from around the world that promote effective, sustainable [...]

Feds, Province Invest Nearly $6M in River Turbine Project

Posted on July 29, 2010
Both federal and provincial governments made investments totalling nearly $6 million to demonstrate the power of water using modular river turbines in the St. Lawrence River. Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) has announced $2.8 million in funding for a project led by Renewable Energy Research (RER), a subsidiary of Quebec-based RSW. RER and its partners will demonstrate the TREK technology, a modular, covered, self-anchoring and highly robust river turbine. This technology can be used to provide baseload, dispatchable or remote electricity. The project will see the installation of two 250 kilowatt-rated TREK turbines [...]
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