Policy and Political Action

Policy & Political Action

RNAO Submission on Tritium in Drinking Water

RNAO Submission on Tritium in Drinking Water

The Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario (RNAO) is the professional association for registered nurses in Ontario. RNAO members practice in all roles and sectors across the province. Our mandate is to advocate for healthy public policy and for the role of registered nurses in enhancing the health of Ontarians. We welcome this opportunity to present to the Ontario Drinking Water Advisory Council (ODWAC) our views on Ontario's drinking water quality standard for tritium.


  1. Implement the ACES recommendation that the Ontario Drinking Water Quality Standard for tritium to be lowered to 20 Bq/L, with a longer-term goal of lowering it much further.
  2. Adopt a similar level of protection in drinking water for all radionuclides listed in the Canadian guidelines for drinking water. That is, set standards analogous to current Ontario Drinking Water Objectives for chemicals: no more than one excess death per million exposed, and with protection against nonfatal illnesses as well.
  3. Require monitoring and public reporting of levels of tritium and other rationuclides in drinking water. Frequency of monitoring should be specified in guidelines.
  4. Use a precautionary approach in deliberations on tritium and other radionuclides.
  5. Reduce and eventually eliminate discharges of tritium and other radionuclides in Ontario.
  6. Establish a committee with the Federal Government to examine tritium's dosimetry and risks. This committee should include scientist representatives from environmental and health groups.
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