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Victoria, B.C.'s 'perfect flush' won't be flowing into Northwest waters anymore

Capital Regional District (Greater Victoria)
A drone photo shows the state-of-the-art sewage treatment plant in Victoria, British Columbia.

Greater Victoria, British Columbia, has finally stopped dumping raw sewage into the Strait of Juan de Fuca.  

The aptly named Wastewater Treatment Project finally started processing Greater Victoria’s sewage for the first time on Dec. 15.

With a cost of over $600 million US ($775 million CAD), the state-of-the-art project took over four years to actually build, but decades of debate to finally get started.

Local Canadian politicians often said the natural currents of the Strait of Juan de Fuca created the “perfect flush."  Meanwhile, Washington state legislators repeatedly demanded that the area stop dumping the untreated Canadian-generated effluent.

Colin Plant
Credit Capital Regional District (Greater Victoria)
Capital Regional District (Greater Victoria)
Colin Plant

  Colin Plant is the chair of the Capital Regional District which operates the facility. He says lobbying from American lawmakers did make a difference. 

"I think it's very fair to suggest that the lobbying that happened from outside of the city of Victoria and the Regional District did have an impact on the federal government and the provincial government adopting regulations that enabled, well not even enabled, that required the Capital Regional District to start treating its wastewater," Plant said.

The treatment facility is the biggest infrastructure project in the region’s history.

Greater Victoria was the last coastal region in the country to finally stop dumping the raw substance into the ocean.