Beneficial Use Impairments

Beneficial Use Impairments (BUIs) are a set of 14 different parameters used when designating an Area of Concern (AOC) under the U.S. – Canada Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement.

The St. Marys River was identified as an Area of Concern because 9 out of 14 beneficial uses were considered to be impaired, and 1 required further assessment.

Today, 6 out of the 14 possible impairments remain on the Canadian Side of the river, and 3 out of 14 remain on the U.S. Side.

The following is a summary of the current impairments in the St. Marys River Area of Concern:

No.

bENEFICIAL USE IMPAIRMENT

sTATUS IN

cANADA

sTATUS IN tHE u.s.

1.

Restrictions on Fish and Wildlife Consumption

Impaired

Impaired

2.

Tainting of Fish and Wildlife Flavour

Never Impaired

Never Impaired

3.

Degradation of Fish and Wildlife Populations

Impaired

Not Impaired

(2019)

4.

Fish Tumors and Other Deformities

Impaired

Impaired

5.

Bird and Animal Deformities or Reproductive Problems


Not Impaired (2015)

Not Impaired (2014)

6.

Degradation of Benthos

Impaired

Impaired

7.

Restrictions on Dredging Activities

Impaired (Change to Not Impaired recommended)

Not Impaired (2018)

8.

Eutrophication and Undesirable Algae

Not Impaired (2018)

Not Impaired (2017)

9.

Restrictions on Drinking Water Consumption or Taste and Odour Problems

Never Impaired

Never Impaired

10.

Beach Closures

Not Impaired (2018)

Not Impaired (2016)

11.

Degradation of Aesthetics

Not Impaired (2018)

Not Impaired (2014)

12.

Added Cost to Agriculture and Industry

Never Impaired

Never Impaired

13.

Degradation of Phytoplankton and Zooplankton

Never Impaired

Never Impaired

14.

Loss of Fish and Wildlife Habitat

Impaired

Not Impaired (2019)