Health and Air Quality in Tilston, Manitoba

Position Statement of the Chief Medical Officer of Health

January 11, 2001

The conclusions stated here are based on the information presently available including input from residents and the community advisory group, air quality monitoring results, Dr. Kraut’s report and health and medical scientific literature.

The following represents an effort to reach fair and reasonable conclusions given the information and evidence available.

  1. Some symptoms reported by residents in the area have been associated with exposure to hydrogen sulphide emissions.
  2. At this time there is no objective evidence of permanent health effects due to past exposure; it is not expected that future permanent health effects will ensue from previous exposures.
  3. If emissions of hydrogen sulphide are controlled to meet present provincial guidelines for ambient levels, residents are not expected to be at increased risk for long-term health effects or permanent health problems.
  4. Some residents may sense odour and/or experience temporary symptoms associated with exposure to hydrogen sulphide at levels below provincial guidelines.

Based on these conclusions, the following recommendations are made:

  1. Action should be taken to ensure that all oil batteries in Manitoba are operated in such a way as to maintain ambient levels of hydrogen sulphide and any other potentially noxious or toxic gases within provincial hourly guidelines.
  2. To minimize the occurrence of symptoms associated with exposure, operators should be encouraged to keep emissions of hydrogen sulphide and any other potentially noxious or toxic gases as low as reasonably achievable.
  3. The Working Group on Air Quality Objectives and Guidelines, which reports to the National Advisory Committee (NAC) under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA), should be requested to consider the findings of Dr. Kraut’s report in its review of the national guidelines for maximum hydrogen sulphide ambient levels.

  • Click here for the Adobe Acrobat PDF version of the Tilston Report. PDF
  • Click here for the MS-Word version of the Tilston Report.

Active Living, Population and Public Health
Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living
4th Floor - 300 Carlton St.
Winnipeg MB  R3B 3M9  CANADA
Phone:  204-788-6666