'....Chemicals released from cigarettes release enough toxins to kill over fifty percent of the fish exposed to those toxins within 96 hours....'
Enviropod completed a trial with the City of Kitchener between June – August 2019.
A single LittaTrap was placed directly adjacent to a frequently used bus stop on King Street.
The objective was to assess both the number and type of pollutants reaching stormwater drains in busy downtown locations.
Throughout the three-month trial, the LittaTrap unit captured a total of 433 gross pollutants. These pollutants were comprised mainly of plastic food wrappers and paper receipts due to the number of food outlets and retail shops within close proximity. Combining this research with other sites, Enviropod has been able to confirm a link between city hotspots and high pollutant loadings.
The three-month LittaTrap trial also saw a significant capture of toxic pollutants, namely cigarettes. Across the three months, a total of 238 cigarettes were captured. Chemicals released from cigarettes release enough toxins to kill over fifty percent of the fish exposed to those toxins within 96 hours.
The LittaTrap also saw the capture of a hypodermic needle, one which would have flowed untreated through to the Grand River had the LittaTrap not caught it. This demonstrates the continuing importance of LittaTraps as a means of preventing toxic materials from reaching our waterways.
If we extrapolate our findings, the following calculations can be assumed:
The single catch basin placed on King Street would have a total of 1,299 pollutants deposited into over the entire year. According to the City of Kitchener GIS Database, there are 12,361 catch basins within the City of Kitchener. Based on the findings of the survey, this could mean up to 16 million gross pollutants are making their way to the Grand River every year.