A rally in Erin had a large turnout on Saturday from local residents protesting a proposed wastewater plant.
The facility in the area of 10th Line and Wellington Road 52 has been in the works for years, but some are concerned about the environmental impacts.
“It creates an environment that the brook trout will not be able to thrive in which will eventually cause a collapse of that fishery,” said Ann Seymour with the West Credit River Watch Coalition.
The town has already approved a $1.5 million contract for the facility that would replace an empty field, but those against it say it isn’t so much about the proposed building, but the sewage impacts.
“The proposal of 7.2 million litres of a fluent into that West Credit River is appalling to me,” said Ken Cowling, a co-organizer of the protest. “West Credit River is also used as a water source for people downstream.”
Erin councilor John Brennan said in a statement the plant and trunk lines will be paid for by development and grants, adding that it’s all about growth.
“Erin has not and will not be allowed to grow utilizing more septic systems. Our schools are currently under-utilized and in danger of being closed if the number of children doesn’t grow,” said Brennanin a statement.
“We’re here for the environment and small community. If we wanted to live in a big community we could move to Brampton or Mississauga or Toronto,” said Erin resident Nicola Ross.
Those protesting the project say it will ruin their sense of communityand that the town isn’t listening to their concerns.
“If we have growth we have more people and all the businesses are going to do better, but that’s just not the case,” said Ross.
Environmental assessments, financial and engineering studies have already been complete with a contract expected to go to tender later this year.
The protesters say they will continue to fight for the protection of the river's habitat and the rural community they call home.
The town has a list of resources for the wastewater plant project on their website.