How You Can Help
Practice water conservation – Half our water use is in the bathroom. Fix that leaky tap. Install a low flow shower head or dual flush toilet. In summer, half our water is wasted outside. Get a rain barrel to collect water for your gardens. Sweep your driveway it with a broom instead of using a hose. Wash your car on the grass instead of the driveway (but not on your septic or leaching bed!).
Maintain your well – Unmaintained, old or unused wells on your property can become a direct pathway for pollution to contaminate groundwater. Contact a licensed well contractor and have your well inspected and maintained. Have unused wells properly decommissioned.
Maintain your septic system – Have it pumped regularly. A failing septic system can contaminate sources of drinking water and cause serious environmental and health problems. Regular, proper maintenance is money well spent and reduces the likelihood of a costly system replacement.
If you heat your home with oil or other fuels – Consider replacing your fuel tank with a double walled or double bottomed tank and installing a drip tray alarm (on indoor tanks). This will help to protect your property and drinking water sources.
In the yard – Take care when handling fuel and other hazardous liquids. Even small amounts of spilled or leaked fuel can contaminate many thousands of litres of groundwater. Plant native plants that require less watering once established. Bonus… they provide food and habitat for local wildlife like bees, butterflies and birds.
In the garage/basement – Be careful and alert when handling, storing or using chemicals, pesticides and fertilizers. Spills of these substances can make our water supplies unsafe for human or animal consumption.
Dispose of your hazardous substances properly – Participate in your municipality’s Household Hazardous Waste program. These programs make sure that substances are disposed of properly and don’t end up contaminating our water supplies.
If you have a shoreline – Keep it natural. Maintain natural vegetation along the shoreline to reduce run-off of pollutants into the water. Vegetation along the shoreline also discourages Canada geese from taking residence on your property.