Nova Scotia

Fluoride debate to continue in CBRM

The debate about fluoride in the drinking water will continue in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.

The debate about fluoride in the drinking water will continue in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.

On Tuesday, councillors put off a decision for 60 days so they can hear from people who support the practice.

The delay came after Marlene Kane urged the municipality to stop adding "this hazardous waste" to the drinking water of Sydney, Glace Bay, North Sydney and New Waterford.

The Sydney environmentalist argued that fluoride is costly, ineffective and triggers a long list of negative health effects.

She said it's widely available in toothpaste and dental treatments, so it's no longer needed in the water.

But Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's medical officer of health, disagrees.

"We know there's tons of evidence that shows that fluoridation of drinking water is the most effective way to prevent tooth decay across the whole population," he told CBC News.

"The levels that are in drinking water are extremely safe and there's no health risk at all."

Kane pointed to Calgary, where city politicians voted 10-3 earlier this month to remove fluoride from the drinking water.

Coun. Dave LeBlanc suggested that council hear from health officials at a meeting in April.

now