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UPDATE: March against sewage plan that threatens Gatineau River

About 600 people are gathered in Chelsea, Quebec this evening preparing to march to the MRC (municipalites rurales qui la composent) des Collines de l’Outaouais office. The issue – community opposition to a plan to “build a regional septic sludge treatment plant that will release treated effluent into the Gatineau River.”

The Friends of the Gatineau River explain, “The MRC des Collines plans to build a massive regional septic sludge treatment plant on the Gatineau River north of Wakefield without credible consideration of any alternative approaches or technologies.”

They also note, “This 10-acre facility will service over 20,000 septic tanks from 6 of the 7 municipalities of the MRC. Its lagoons (aeration pits) will release effluent into the Gatineau River for at least the next 40 years.”

Those gathered are asking the mayors of the municipalities – meeting tonight – for a better plan to deal with the sewage. The march is intended to take that message to them directly.

Update: Those gathered marched from the field by the visitors entrance to Gatineau Park along a short stretch of highway to the MRC civic building.

People were able to get close enough to the ground-floor window to see inside where the mayors were meeting. 35 people (the seating capacity) were let in to watch the meeting.

The large assembly of people clapped, banged drums and chanted for almost an hour, clearly audible to the decision-makers inside.

The crowd of ‘water warriors’ promised to be back at the next meeting of mayors.