Canoeist David Danyluk doesn’t live far from Winnipeg’s Assiniboine River but he tends to spend more time paddling further afield.
That’s because he doesn’t want to risk gliding through the sewage that regularly makes its way into Winnipeg’s river system.
The sewage dumps are a black mark on the city’s reputation, said Danyluk.
“It’s pretty embarrassing. If a child fouls a pool, a buzzer rings and everyone takes off. And here, it’s a shrug from the city.”
Some 3.2 million litres of raw sewage and rainfall runoff spilled into Winnipeg’s river system last month but the incident was unusual only in scope.
The amount was one of the largest spills in years but was one of about 20 such events that occur each year.
The city is planning to spend more than $1 billion and take more than two decades to greatly reduce such spills, although they will not be completely eliminated.