Water Quality

Water Quality is closely monitored to ensure compliance with standards set by Ministry of Health.

On the District’s website is information on:

Water Quality Standards and Advisories

Ways Residents Can Preserve Water Quality

District Reporting on Water Quality

SPWD Position Paper on Lead in Drinking Water

The best way to make sure drinking water supplies are kept clean, safe and reliable is to take a preventive risk management approach. The District follows the recommendations contained in Health Canada’s Multi – Barrier Approach for Ensuring Safe Water.

The elements of the Multi-Barrier Approach in the District’s Water Quality Framework are:

1. Trustee and Management Actions

  • Be aware of Provincial regulatory framework and Drinking Water Officer’s Guide
  • Require certification of facilities & operators
  • Follow land-use bylaws, report land-use contraventions affecting water quantity and quality to zoning authorities 
  • Conduct enterprise and physical risk assessments and update plans as necessary
  • Maintain and update 10 year plan for facility maintenance and capital renewal

2. Public Education 

  • Maintain website with current and practical information on water quality
  • Stress importance of cross connection control of any secondary sources of water at premises
  • Encourage proper maintenance of septic systems
  • Emphasize the importance of protecting groundwater from contamination by animal droppings, improper disposal of chemicals & pharmaceuticals, petroleum spills from poorly maintained equipment, and use of pesticides,
  • Encourage conservation and rainwater capture for gardening

3. Source Protection

  • Ensure wells are properly drilled and completed
  • Inspect and maintain well equipment at appropriate intervals
  • Use certified well pump technicians for well equipment maintenance 
  • Divert storm water away from wells
  • Ensure intrusion prevention measures are effective

4. Treatment

  • Follow the 4-3-2-1-0 treatment objective
    • 4 log inactivation of viruses using hypochlorite disinfection 
      • See Pathogen Log Reduction Credit Calculation
    • 3 log removal or inactivation of Giardia and Cryptosporidium using hypochlorite disinfection in combination with RO filtration and 1 micron cartridge filtration. 
      • See Pathogen Log Reduction Credit Calculation
    • 2 treatment processes for all sources including hypochlorite disinfection, RO, and cartridge filtration @ 1 and 5 micron
    • <1 NTU of turbidity (goal of 0.1) using 5 micron filtration after sand or RO filtration
    • 0 total and fecal coliforms and E. Coli: through hypochlorite disinfection, monthly monitoring of system, quarterly monitoring of wells
  • Maintain operating records of treatment effectiveness, operation issues, and maintenance
  • Ensure use of NSF approved materials and components in treatment
  • Schedule renewal of filtration media

5. Secure Distribution Network

  • Provide secondary disinfection using sodium hypochlorite to maintain free chlorine residual of 1.2 mg/L in Reservoir and > 0.2 mg/L at the ends of the system, tested twice per week.
  • Installation of backflow prevention check valves at each meter. 
  • Bi-annual cross connection survey of residents. Emphasize by-law requirement for cross connection back-flow preventers at premises known to have supplemental well water, pressurized water systems, inter-connected rainwater capture systems, or swimming pools.
  • Maintain water main system pressure at leaks or breaks. Utilize NSSWD protocols for flushing and disinfection at repair locations.

6. Monitoring

  • Ensure the Island Health approved testing plan for monitoring source quality parameters, bacteria, metals and other contaminants is followed
  • Track results and trends of parameters and treatment effectiveness
  • Monitor alarms from data supervision system
  • Record and track quality complaints from residents

7. Cleaning

  • Ensure the water main is flushed at least annually
  • Schedule cleaning of reservoir and intermediate tanks at appropriate intervals

8. Response

  • Regularly review and update emergency response plans
  • Maintain current resident contact list