Threats to water are being mapped

Thursday, March 18, 2010

NEWMARKET – The South Georgian Bay LakeThreats to water are being mapped Simcoe Source Protection Committee is preparing a report which will identify threats to municipal drinking water in the region.

With World Water Day next week, and the speech from the throne underscoring Ontario’s commitment to clean water, the South Georgian Bay Lake Simcoe Watershed is already undergoing scientific assessment as part of Ontario’s 2006 Clean Water Act.

The Assessment Report will map the areas where drinking water sources are “vulnerable” to contamination or overuse. It will look at human activity in these vulnerable areas and assess its risk of contaminating the water supply. In a vulnerable area, a parcel of land with a septic system, or one with fuel storage might be considered a threat to a water supply. Other things that might be threats include the application of agricultural material, the spilling of chemicals or waste into the environment and overflowing municipal sewage pipes.

“This report is the first step in ensuring that human activities that are hazardous to sources of drinking water are monitored” says the Chair of the Source Protection Committee and Innisfil Councillor Lynn Dollin. “This report allows us to get a good picture of human activities near sources of our drinking water that might be or become a threat to that water.” Over the next two years, the committee will be making policies to address activities that have been deemed threats.

“Our drinking water is some of the safest in the world, and this process is aimed at ensuring that it will always remain so,” says Don Goodyear, Director of Source Water Protection at the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority. “We want to start the conversation early with people who might be affected.” As part of the source protection process, residents who have, or might have threats on their property will be notified by letter.

The report will be published online in the spring along with open houses so residents can find out what the region is doing to protect our drinking water. Click here for more information