Changing Socio-Economic Conditions in the Hamilton Harbour (Ontario) Area: Implications for Harbour Remediation

by Karl A. Schaefer, Environment Canada, Burlington, Canada,
Chris A. Robinson, Environment Canada, Burlington, Canada,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '91


The 1987 Protocol amending the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement of 1978 called for the preparation of Remedial Action Plans for forty-two Areas of Concern (typically polluted harbours and riverine systems) in the Great Lakes basin. The Protocol's main intent is the restoration of impaired water-related uses. Hamilton Harbour is one of the seventeen Canadian Areas of Concern. The nature of impairments in the Harbour include, for instance, prohibited swimming, consumption advisories on certain fish species, contaminated sediment and the disturbance of waterbird colonies and other Harbour habitat. As part of the Remedial Action Process, a socio-economic profile of the Hamilton Harbour area was prepared to outline more clearly the link between human activity and beneficial water-related uses in the Harbour. In specific, the profile reviewed past, present and future demographic, land use and economic conditions in this Area of Concern, and described the potential implications for changes in the demand of the various water uses in the Harbour. As such, the socio-economic profile should facilitate: in outlining the existing and future water use conflicts; in selecting remedial actions; in the assessment of the degree to which current uses require modification in order to restore beneficial uses; and to highlight some of the economic and environmental benefits of improved water quality for the Harbour area.

Subject Headings: Ports and harbors | Water quality | Water pollution | Economic factors | Water resources | Social factors | Water management | Ontario | Canada | Great Lakes

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