Wheatley Harbour: Area of Concern (Delisted)

Wheatley Harbour was designated an Area of Concern (AOC) in 1987 under the Canada-U.S. Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. Years of industrial pollution, primarily from fish and vegetable processing plants, as well as contamination from agricultural and wastewater sources led to degraded water quality and environmental health. Five out of 14 beneficial use impairments (BUIs) were identified, which measure the environmental, human health or economic impact of poor water quality. One additional beneficial use was deemed as “requiring further assessment”, meaning more information was required to determine whether they were impaired.


In 2010, Wheatley Harbour became the third Canadian AOC to be delisted. We delist an AOC when monitoring shows that targets for all BUIs have been met and environmental quality has been restored.

Monitoring confirmed that environmental quality was restored through:

Restoration of beneficial uses

All beneficial uses are no longer considered “impaired”. These included:

Our partners

We partner with other levels of government, non-government groups, Indigenous communities and members of the public. This restoration work required a large amount of scientific and technical expertise, local knowledge, hard work and the help of:

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