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Study finds that E. coli in First Lake caused by human waste

By Joe Thomson Jul 7, 2023 | 10:01 AM

Jeanne Menjoulet / CC

A recent report commissioned by the Halifax Regional Municipality has determined the source of E.coli that one councilor says has been contaminating Kinsmen Beach on first Lake in Lower Sackville for 30 years.

After working with the Friends of First Lake Water Stewardship Committee, the location with the highest levels of E. coli was determined and the cause of the contamination was revealed to be human waste.

The report states:

“The results of this study found E. coli in high concentrations indicating domestic wastewater is entering the stormwater system around First Lake.”

Councilor for Lower Sackville, Paul Russell, says that HRM will hold a public information meeting to discuss the report with residents later this summer.

In the meantime, he says they’re working toward solutions. Halifax Water is working to identify exactly where the wastewater is entering the lake. Solutions for filtering out the contaminated water could include nature-based approaches such as enhanced vegetation swales, where the ground is used as a filtration system.

Russell says that getting the lake healthy again so that people can enjoy it to the fullest is very important to him.


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