Nova Scotia

Sydney Harbour wastewater treatment facility gets $58M

Million of dollars has been committed by all three levels of government to build new wastewater collection and treatment facilities on the west side of Sydney Harbour.

Each level of government will contribute slightly more than $19M; work to be completed over 10 years

A $58-million wastewater treatment project has been announced to divert sewage from Sydney Harbour to a treatment facility in the Sydport Industrial Park.

Million of dollars has been committed by all three levels of government to build new wastewater collection and treatment facilities on the west side of Sydney Harbour.

The announcement for $58 million in funding was made in Sydney on Tuesday by Justice Minister Peter MacKay, Nova Scotia Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Geoff MacLellan and Cape Breton Regional Municipality Mayor Cecil Clarke.

Each level of government will contribute slightly more than $19 million, with the work to be completed over 10 years.

"It's anticipated in the first two years it will be heavy on engineering work, consultants, surveyors, labourers," said Matthew Viva, the manager of wastewater operations for the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.

"In the middle phase, the construction phase, it will be contractors, heavy civil work, labourers, operators. That's pretty much the break down."

The mayor is touting the plan's job creation potential.

"This project will create 270,000 hours of employment and make our harbour cleaner," Clarke said.

Over the course of the work, a new wastewater collection system will be installed and a secondary treatment facility built on the side of the harbour opposite Sydney. Combined sanitary and storm sewer mains will be separated to reduce the risk of sewer overflows into the harbour and decrease the amount of groundwater in the sewer collection system.

In all, the wastewater from 7,000 homes and businesses in the community of Westmount will be diverted from outfalls in Sydney Harbour to a treatment plant in the nearby Sydport Industrial Park.

The federal government introduced new wastewater treatment standards in 2012.

Wastewater systems posing a high risk will be required to meet the effluent quality standards by the end of 2020, medium risk by the end of 2030, and low risk by the end of 2040.

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