With the loss of numerous Manitoba wetlands over the years the effects are now coming to the forefront.  A recent  panel discussion held by Jon Gerrard and the Manitoba Liberal Caucus helped to shed some light on the subject.


With a panel of experts in attendance the “Save Lake Winnipeg” forum held at River Heights Community Centre discussed the serious issues at hand.  Research scientists from numerous organizations along with biologists and wilderness advocates explained how the loss of waterways has negatively affected the remaining waters including Lake Winnipeg and Lake Manitoba.


Phosphorus was the key word of the evening, as its high levels have ravaged the provinces lakes and rivers delicate ecosystems.  Nutrients polluting Manitoba’s big lakes from phosphate-laden drainage are resulting in algal blooms overtaking the bodies of water, said University of Manitoba research scientist Greg McCullough


Winnipeg sewage and flooding and runoff from North Dakota and Minnesota are taking a major toll.  The loss of the aforementioned waterways that use to hang on to these nutrients and no longer exist leaves the full totality of the pollutants to the remaining rivers and lakes.


“Wetlands are like bathtubs on the landscape to trap water,”said Pascal Badiou, a research scientist with Ducks Unlimited Canada.


The city of Winnipeg has said it expects to overhaul its sewage treatment  plant in the next four to six years to remove the phosphorus, at a cost of nearly $2 billion.  The plan is noteworthy but could take up to a decade before it is in full swing.


Manitoba’s waters are one of the most precious natural resources in the province and need protection.  Exposure may be the key as a recent poll of Canadians outside of the province revealed that most were unaware that an issue existed in Manitoba.


Lake Winnipeg was recently named the most threatened lake in the world for  2013 by the Global Nature Fund

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