A University of Alberta scientist says his research shows that concerns about contaminants in the Athabasca River from the oilsands are overstated.
Bill Shotyk says a new set of highly accurate measurements of heavy metals in the river show the amounts of toxins such as lead and cadmium dissolved in the water are vanishingly small.
Shotyk’s tests found most heavy metals in the water to be attached to particles.
He says that means they can’t be absorbed by living organisms.
Shotyk’s conclusions question previous government and academic research on contamination in the Athabasca.
The authors of those papers argue Shotyk’s approach is flawed.