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Protecting Sault Ste. Marie Region Drinking Water

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Protecting Sault Ste. Marie Region Drinking Water

Ontario Supports Actions to Safeguard Drinking Water

Ontario has approved the Sault Ste. Marie Region Source Protection Plan to strengthen local source-to-tap drinking water protection.

The plan, developed by local municipal and community partners on the Sault Ste. Marie region source protection committee, will take effect July 1, 2015.

Source protection plans are designed to protect the water quality of the lakes, rivers and sources of underground water that supply municipal drinking water systems. The plans set out actions to eliminate, manage or reduce potential risks to drinking water sources.

Actions set out in the Sault Ste. Marie Region plan include:

  • Creating plans to manage fuel handling and storage in the protection zones for the Goulais Well.
  • Developing a plan to respond to a fuel or fertilizer spill in the Gros Cap intake protection zone.
  • Providing information to residents on the proper management of significant risks such as the handling and storage of manure, commercial fertilizers, biosolids and pesticides, livestock grazing and pasturing, snow storage, and the storage and handling of hazardous liquids.

Protecting drinking water is part of the government's economic plan for Ontario. The four-part plan is building Ontario up by investing in people's talents and skills, building new public infrastructure like roads and transit, creating a dynamic, supportive environment where business thrives and building a secure savings plan so everyone can afford to retire.

Quick Facts

  • The Clean Water Act established 19 local committees across Ontario. Each committee developed science-based plans that address risks to the water that supplies municipal drinking water systems.
  • The Sault Ste. Marie Region has one large municipal-residential drinking water system that serves approximately 76 per cent of the area's residents.
  • Sault Ste. Marie region is the 15th source protection plan to be approved.

Additional Resources


“Few things are as important to our health as having safe water to drink. Ontario's multi-barrier approach to protect drinking water has made our tap water among the best protected in the world. Protecting the sources of drinking water - our lakes, rivers and groundwater - is the foundation of our safety net.”

Glen Murray

Minister of the Environment and Climate Change

“After seven years of technical studies and collaboration with our community partners and the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, the Sault Ste. Marie region source protection committee is very pleased to have our plan approved. We are eager to move on to the implementation phase. Our community can feel confident that our precious drinking-water resource will be diligently monitored and protected by our source protection plan policies.”

Peter McLarty

Chair of the Sault Ste. Marie region source protection committee

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