Transcript: Climate Watch Shorts: Water quality at Ontario's beaches | Sep 30, 2016

A spinning black globe with white latitude and longitude markings appears over
a cloudy sky. A caption reads "Tvo Climate Watch... Shorts."

(music plays)

A woman in her thirties with frizzY brown hair in a bob, wearing glasses and
a blue blouse, stands on the shore of a lake and speaks. A caption reads "Nam
Kiwanuka, Climate Watch Shorts host."

Nam says WELCOME TO CLIMATE
WATCH SHORTS,
WHERE WE EXAMINE THE LOCAL
IMPACT OF CLIMATE CHANGE.
HOTTER SUMMERS MEAN MORE
DAYS AT THE BEACH,
BUT THE CHANGING
CLIMATE IS ALSO CREATING
IDEAL CONDITIONS FOR
E. COLI BACTERIA.
STAFF IN DURHAM REGION MONITOR
THE QUALITY OF THE WATER.
HERE'S WHAT THEY'VE SEEN.

Over a clip showing the lake, a caption reads "Beach Water Quality." The camera
dips under the water to show murky water over the graveled lake bed. On a divided
screen, a caption reads "Ontario had 13 reported cases of E.coli infection that
required medical care in 2015. Runoff and sewage contribute to E.coli
contamination in lakes, which is made worse by more frequent severe storms."

(Dramatic music plays)

A slim woman with auburn hair in her thirties stands near a beach and speaks.
A caption reads Krystyn Tully, Founder and Vice-President, Lake Ontario
Waterkeeper."

Krystyn says AS A RESULT OF
CLIMATE CHANGE,
WE'RE HAVING MORE EXTREME
WEATHER THAN EVER BEFORE.
WE'VE HAD THREE 100-YEAR
STORMS IN TORONTO
IN THE LAST 12
OR 13 YEARS.
WE'VE HAD 25-YEAR
STORMS SEVEN TIMES.
SO, WE'RE GENERATING
FAR MORE RAINWATER
AND RUNOFF THAN WE
THOUGHT IN OUR CITIES,
WHICH MEANS THAT MORE SEWAGE
IS FLOWING INTO OUR LAKES
THAN WE ORIGINALLY EXPECTED,
WHICH, UNFORTUNATELY MEANS,
THAT THE E. COLI PROBLEM
AND THE BACTERIA
PROBLEM IS FAR WORSE
THAN WE THOUGHT IT
WAS GOING TO BE.

A fast clip shows a view from a vehicle moving through a city area. A
caption on a divided screen reads "A 100-year storm is an event that has
a 1 percent chance of occurring in any given year. Severe storms flood
sewage systems and increase agricultural runoff, which raises E.coli levels."
(Dramatic music plays)

A bald man in his forties wearing a black T-shirt and jeans stands on the
gravelly shore of the lake looking at the water. A caption reads "Durham
Region's health department monitors water quality at 14 public beaches.
Weekly tests for E.coli determine whether the water is safe for swimming."
Another caption reads "Michael Pittman, Senior Public Health Inspector, Durham
Region."

Michael says WE ACTUALLY WILL
TAKE FIVE SAMPLES
AT EACH BEACH.
WE USE WHAT'S CALLED
A GEOMETRIC "MEME,"
SORT OF AN AVERAGE OF
THOSE FIVE NUMBERS.
AND IF THAT IS UNDER 100,
THEN THE BEACH
WILL NOT BE POSTED.
IF IT'S ABOVE 100 -
THAT'S THE THRESHOLD -
THEN WE WILL
POST THE BEACH.

Against a lab background a man in his forties with short black hair and glasses
speaks. -A caption reads "Marc Habash, School of Environmental Sciences,
University of Guelph."

Marc says IF WE HAVE A WARMING,
E. COLI MIGHT BE ABLE
TO PERSIST FOR
LONGER AND SURVIVE
FOR LONGER IN THE
ENVIRONMENT.
(Lively music plays)

Against a clip of Marc shaking a liquid in a beaker, a half-screen caption
reads "Habash is researching ways to improve water quality testing. His work focuses
on identifying specific toxins and the sources of pollutants.

Marc continues WHEN WE DETECT THEM, IT
TELLS US THERE HAS BEEN
FECAL POLLUTION THAT'S
ENTERED OUR WATER.
WHAT IT DOESN'T TELL,
THOUGH, IT DOESN'T TELL US
WHAT SPECIFIC
PATHOGENS ARE THERE;
IT DOESN'T TELL US
WHERE IT CAME FROM.
ALL IT TELLS US IS THERE'S
A POTENTIAL PROBLEM,
AND A BEACH MAY
NEED TO BE POSTED
BECAUSE IT'S NOT SAFE
FOR PEOPLE TO SWIM.

Krystyn says SO WHEN WE LOOK AT E. COLI,
WE'RE LOOKING BOTH
AT THE RISKS TO HUMAN
HEALTH FROM THE BACTERIA,
AND WE'RE LOOKING AT TRENDS
IN WATER QUALITY OVER TIME.
AND WHAT WE'RE SEEING IS
THAT AS POPULATIONS GROW,
WE'RE GETTING MORE
WASTEWATER BEING GENERATED
IN OUR URBAN ENVIRONMENTS.
BUT WE HAVEN'T EXPANDED
OUR SEWAGE TREATMENT SYSTEMS
AS RAPIDLY AS WE'VE
EXPANDED OUR POPULATIONS.
SO, ALL YOU NEED TO DO
IN DOWNTOWN TORONTO
IS LOOK AT THE SKYLINE
THAT'S BEHIND US.
LOOK AT ALL THOSE
BUILDINGS THAT HAVE GONE UP
IN THE LAST TEN YEARS
AND KNOW THAT EVERYTHING
THAT'S HAPPENING IS BEING
HOOKED INTO THE SYSTEM
THAT WAS DESIGNED 60,
70, 100 YEARS AGO.

Michael says BY
THIS TIME OF THE YEAR
AS YOU GET LATER
IN THE SEASON,
WE TEND TO HAVE MORE
AND MORE BEACH POSTINGS
DUE TO THE ELEVATED
WATER TEMPERATURE.
THIS YEAR THE
NUMBERS SEEM TO BE
A LITTLE BETTER
THAN USUAL.
AFTER A HEAVY RAINFALL,
WE ADVISE PEOPLE
NOT TO GO INTO THE WATER...
USUALLY 24 TO 48 HOURS
AFTER A HEAVY
RAINFALL EVENT.

Krystyn says THE PEOPLE WHO
ARE OUT HERE TODAY SURFING
AND SAILING AND
CANOEING AND BOATING,
THEY'RE JUMPING
IN THE WATER,
THEY'RE SPLASHING,
THEY'RE UNDER IT.
THEY SHOULD KNOW IT HASN'T
RAINED IN SEVERAL DAYS,
THERE'S BEEN NO COMBINED
SEWAGE OVERFLOW EVENT,
THERE'S BEEN NO WASTEWATER
TREATMENT PLANT BYPASS.
THE WATER'S CLEAN.
THEY'VE GOT A
GREEN LIGHT...
OR THEY SHOULD KNOW
THAT ACTUALLY
IT RAINED OVERNIGHT.
THERE'S A SEWAGE OVERFLOW.
YOU MAY FIND DEBRIS
IN THE WATER
LIKE CONDOMS OR NEEDLES,
TAMPON APPLICATORS,
THINGS YOU DON'T WANT
TO BE SWIMMING WITH.
THEN THE PUBLIC
IS NOTIFIED.
THEY CAN TAKE STEPS TO
PROTECT THEIR HEALTH.
AND A CREW SHOULD BE DISPATCHED
TO ACTUALLY CLEAN THAT UP
TO MAKE IT SAFE WHILE
THE LONGER-TERM
INFRASTRUCTURE REPAIRS
ARE HAPPENING.
(Theme music plays)

Over a cloudy sky, the end slate caption reads "tvo.orgslashclimatewatch."

Watch: Climate Watch Shorts: Water quality at Ontario's beaches