FREDERICTON (GNB) – Building owners are required to apply to license their cooling towers before the end of the month.

All cooling towers must be licensed by Aug. 1 under new legislated requirements intended to ensure the protection of New Brunswickers. The yearly licencing fee is $450 per cooling tower but it has been waived until March 31, 2023.

The regulatory framework is being introduced in two phases:

  • Phase 1: Mandatory licensing of cooling towers by Aug. 1.
  • Phase 2: Legislated requirements such as water management plans and legionella testing and reporting (implemented by April 2023).

“These new requirements will mean that Public Health will have a comprehensive registry of cooling towers in the province, which will simplify its investigations and allow it to act quickly should any future legionella outbreaks occur,” said Health Minister Dorothy Shephard. “The new requirements will also provide more opportunities to educate business owners on best practices to prevent legionella bacteria from forming and spreading as we implement the second phase of the regulatory framework: establishing a comprehensive monitoring and surveillance system of cooling towers to help prevent future outbreaks.”

Legionnaires’ disease is a serious respiratory illness caused by the bacteria legionella, which thrives in water. Infection with legionella can cause fever, cough, muscle pain and headache and can lead to pneumonia. The illness can be severe, progressing to respiratory failure and death in 10 to15 per cent of cases.

A consultation process with industry will be held this fall to receive feedback prior to finalizing the second phase of the regulations. Those who have obtained licences for their cooling towers will be invited to participate.

More information on registering for a licence is available online.