The Northern Village of Denare Beach celebrated a recent $5.2 million upgrade to its wastewater treatment plant on Friday.

The new plant became operational about five months ago.

Local mayor Carl Lentowicz says, from an environmental perspective, it was critical to get the upgrade done.

“In order to ensure that the environment is looked after, the regulations have improved over the years, and this basically provided a need,” he says. “And our community is surrounded by lakes – we have, I believe, four or five lakes right in our community here – so it is very important.”

The plant in Denare Beach is now able to perform much more reliable wastewater collection and treatment and has also reduced the volume of effluent.

Federal, provincial, and municipal governments and the Peter Ballantyne Cree Nation contributed to the project.