From Niagara Falls MPP to Ontario’s Premier – The Niagara River Is Not A Sewer!

A News Release from Niagara Falls MPP Wayne Gates

Posted December 4th, 2017 on Niagara At Large

Queen’s Park, Ontario  – This Monday, December 4th, Wayne Gates, NDP MPP for Niagara Falls, continued to press the Liberal government to protect the Great Lakes and Ontario water ways, and stop the dumping of raw sewage into the Niagara River.

“Last week, the International Joint Commission released its first assessment on the progress by both US and Canadian governments on the protection of our Great Lakes and rivers,” said Gates. “There certainly has been a lack of action by the premier to address the dumping of sewage into the Niagara River this past summer.”

A massive blob of inky pollution floating in the Niagara River below the American and Horseshoe Falls, with tourist boats floating through it this past summer.

This week, a report commissioned by the International Joint Commission criticized the government for their lack of action on addressing sewage spills and monitoring of toxic chemicals in the Great Lakes.

“How can we eliminate or prevent toxic chemicals in the Niagara River, Lake Ontario or Lake Erie when this government won’t do the research to identify which chemicals are toxic?” asked Gates. “How does this government claim to be a leader on environmental protection, yet still allow slow progress?”

Gates’ question came as the Niagara River continues to struggle with sewage overflows from the city of Niagara Falls, NY.  Gates said that people in his community are feeling the impact of years of Liberal neglect on pressing environmental issues.

“It took the minister of the Environment almost one full month to reply to two letters I sent concerning these serious sewage spills,” said Gates. “When he finally did answer, he simply said it was an American issue and seemed to deny that these dumps in the shared river in any way affected our side of the river.”

This filthy scum has been visible below the world-famous falls, off and on, for years, and no one seems to want to take any responsibility for addressing it. Rainbow Bridge crossing between Niagara Falls, Ontario and New York States is visible in the background. File photo by Doug Draper

To hear or watch Niagara Falls MPP Wayne Gates raising this issue in the Ontario legislature this December 4th, 2017, click on one of the following –



 A Brief Footnote from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper – This past summer, when one of Niagara, Ontario’s daily newspaper asked the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change how it might respond to one massive discharge of pollution to the Niagara River from a Niagara Falls, New York wastewater treatment plant,  a spokesperson for the Ministry emailed back that there would be no response because the pollution originated from a source on the American side of the river – as if the waters of the river and Lake Ontario are not shared by millions of people in New York and Ontario.

Sad to say, we have heard nothing from the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change since and even though there have been a number of follow up discharges of pollution from this same wastewater plant. Nor have we heard a word from Environment Canada.

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 “A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders



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