Toronto, ON – We are pleased that Toronto City Council has voted to direct Toronto Water to develop a self-funded loan program to help Toronto homeowners replace lead pipes. This program will assist homeowners in replacing toxic lead water pipes with safer alternatives.
Numerous studies have demonstrated the toxicity of lead, particularly affecting pregnant women and children. Not only is lead a possible carcinogen, it is also toxic to every organ in the body and children are at a much higher risk from exposure than adults. Even though agencies like Health Canada warn that lead is toxic in even small doses, tens of thousands of homeowners across Toronto are still exposed to unsafe levels of lead daily through water pipes.
Toronto citizens have a right to clean drinking water uncontaminated with serious toxic substances. Today’s decision is the right step forward to improving public health and moving to higher standards. 
Environmental Defence encourages those living in houses and apartment buildings (with fewer than six units) built before the mid-1950s to call 311 or Toronto Public Health to arrange for water testing. If lead is found to be present over 10 parts per billion, it is recommended that the pipes be replaced with a non-toxic alternative.
About ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE (www.environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental Defence is Canada’s most effective environmental action organization. We challenge, and inspire change in government, business and people to ensure a greener, healthier and prosperous life for all.
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For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
Stephanie Kohls, Environmental Defence, 416-885-7847 (cell), skohls@environmentaldefence.ca