LEAD UPDATE: THE MONTRÉAL SITUATION
This story is brought to you in part by Rainmaker Worldwide
by Cori Marshall
We have looked at how other Canadian cities have addressed the presence of lead in their water service lines. Today we look at how Montréal, Québecís Metropolis, has addressed their lead issues. Montréal, as you will see, decided to tackle the situation head on a decade ago.
Communications Officer for the Ville de Montréal, Natalie Valade, said that in 2007 the city "adopted an action plan to screen and replace the existing drinking water service entrances in the City by 2026." The city replaces the lead fixtures when other road work is being carried out. Valade added that "since 2006, there have been an estimated 10,000 replacements."
The city adopted a new communications campaign in 2016 that aims to "re-educate citizens about the problem of lead and to encourage them to replace the private section of their lead service entrance."
The city has stepped up its efforts to address the problem of its own lead pipes; Valade underlined that "since 2014, the replacement rate has jumped by 312% compared to the average annual rate for 2006-2010."
The city has made significant investments into ensuring that its population is provided lead-free drinking water. Valade explained, "the City is investing $ 34.3 million annually in its lead screening and replacement program for the next five years." After this investment period the city "plans to invest $ 31.7 million per year in this area."
The City does an annual review of the screening and replacement program. The yearly portrait is taken to assess city progress. Montréal has set a goal of 69,000 lead pipe replacements by 2026.