Northern Canadian communities such as those in Nunavut are exempt from nationally regulated treatment standards and need to meet less strict regulations. Most communities are serviced by trucks which pick up waste water from tanks in house. Different wastewater treatment options are applied, ranging from waste stabilisation ponds and/or wetlands to variations of mechanical treatment plants. If waste stabilisation ponds are supplemented by properly designed wetlands, high wastewater treatment standards, meeting national regulations, can be reached in Nunavut. Simple systems work better than complicated mechanical treatment plants.
Nunavut, the northwestern part of Canada became a territory of Canada in 1999. Nunavut contains 25 remote, fly-in communities with a total of 34,000 inhabitants of which 84% are Inuit. The population lives from traditional practices blended with a wage-based economy. Nunavut communities are affected by documented high infectious GI rates which may be due to poor drinking water and sanitation services.
At the end of this lecture students will:
- Know about the challenges and solutions in waste water treatment in small isolated communities
- Learn how the waste water quality is assessed in Canada
- Understand how the lagoon and wetland systems perform in the high north
Derivation of treatment rate constants for an arctic tundra wetland receiving primary treated municipal wastewater
Recommendations for the Use of Tundra Wetlands for Treatment of Municipal Wastewater in Canada’s Far North
Operational Limitations of Arctic Waste Stabilization Ponds: Insights from Modeling Oxygen Dynamics and Carbon Removal
Wastewater treatment and public health in Nunavut: a microbial risk assessment framework for the Canadian Arctic
“This review offers a conceptual framework and evaluation of current knowledge to enable the first microbial risk assessment of exposure scenarios associated with food-harvesting and recreational activities in Arctic communities, where simplified wastewater systems are being operated”.DALEY, K., JAMIESON, R., RAINHAM, D. and HANSEN, L. (2018): Wastewater treatment and public health in Nunavut: a microbial risk assessment framework for the Canadian Arctic. Environmental Science and Pollution Research 25 (33), 32860–32872. URL [Accessed: 28.01.2019] PDF