News Feature | November 22, 2013

Ontario Offers Incentives To Municipalities To Protect Source Water

By Sara Jerome

ontarioregular

A Canadian province is boosting its efforts to protect drinking water. 

Almost 200 municipalities in Ontario will receive government support to carry out "source water protection plans," the province's Ministry of the Environment announced this month. 

The Ministry of Environment regulates drinking water and wastewater utilities. 

"These plans, which are developed locally, are an important part of Ontario's drinking water safety net and protect existing and future sources of drinking water," the ministry said. 

The plans address activities and land use around wells and intakes to protect existing and future sources of drinking water.

Funding is provided. The ministry said that "189 municipalities are eligible for grants ranging from $18,000 to $100,000. An additional incentive of up to $15,000 is available to municipalities that work together to implement source protection plans."

The effort aims to for multiple-stakeholder involvement. "A total of $1,487,789 is being provided across the source protection planning region to assist municipalities with establishing business processes and protocols required for successful Source Protection Plan implementation, amending municipal land use planning documents, communicating with affected landowners and developing education and outreach materials," the Northumberland View reported

Ontario regulates source water through the Clean Water Act, which "requires that local communities - through local Source Protection Committees - assess existing and potential threats to their water, and that they set out and implement the actions needed to reduce or eliminate these threats," according to the ministry. 

Lately in Ontario, it is bottled water, not tap water, which has presented a problem. 

"Ontario's Health Ministry is warning consumers to steer clear of bottled water manufactured by a Caledon-based company.

It says samples taken from Blue Glass Water Co. Ltd.'s products have been found to be 'heavily contaminated with bacteria,'" CTV News recently reported

Read about technology use in Canada on Water Online, including an approach to smart meters.  

Image credit: "Ottawa, Ontario, Canada," © 2012 Hobolens, used under an Attribution 2.0 Generic license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en

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