Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs
Environment and Conservation
July 23, 2015
Delivering Clean and Safe Drinking Water
Government Progressing on Community Sustainability Partnership Initiative
A new community sustainability partnership was announced through Budget 2015 that will provide communities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador with increased revenues and capacity supports. One of the priorities of the community sustainability partnership is to continue to ensure clean and safe drinking water for the residents of the province. Today, a contract to develop Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that will assist in reducing Boil Water Advisories (BWAs) in Newfoundland and Labrador was awarded to Big East Engineering Inc.
“Our government allocated approximately $1.8 million through the community sustainability partnership to further assist communities in the area of clean and safe drinking water. This includes a $180,000 annual investment that will enable a consultant to develop procedures to help communities identify the steps required to lift boil water advisories.”
- The Honourable Keith Hutchings, Minister of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs
Through municipal operating grants and increased revenue supports under the community sustainability partnership, the Provincial Government is continuing to make additional funds available to enable towns to address the priority area of clean and safe drinking water. Ensuring residents have clean and safe drinking water is a shared responsibility that requires communities to work collectively with the Provincial Government.
The main objectives of this initiative are:
- To identify common causes for the issuance of BWAs on public drinking water systems;
- To identify potential corrective measures for the common causes of BWAs in the province; and
- To identify measures for the prevention of further BWAs.
Once developed, the SOPs will be used as a reference document to assist in the removal of BWAs in selected communities on an annual basis. Further information about BWAs may be found in the backgrounder below.
BWAs are issued on public drinking water systems where there is a known or perceived risk of microbiological contamination. Some standard reasons for issuing a BWA can be found online at: www.env.gov.nl.ca/env/waterres/quality/drinkingwater/advisory_fact_sheet.html
“We have engaged a consultant to focus exclusively on solutions to reduce the number of boil water advisories, in particular, long-term advisories. Delivering clean and safe drinking water to the residents of Newfoundland and Labrador is a top priority for our government and I am confident that this project will help tremendously in this area.”
- The Honourable Dan Crummell, Minister of Environment and Conservation
This initiative is being led by the departments of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs, and Environment and Conservation, along with the support of the departments of Health and Community Services, and Service NL.
- Budget 2015, through the community sustainability partnership, allocated approximately $1.8 million for clean and safe drinking water. This includes an annual investment of $180,000 to reduce the total number of Boil Water Advisories on public water supplies.
- Boil Water Advisories are issued on public drinking water systems where there is a known or perceived risk of microbiological contamination.
- The objective of this project is to develop Standard Operating Procedures for the removal of advisories that have been issued to public drinking water systems.
- The Department of Environment and Conservation is leading this project with Big East Engineering.
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Director of Communications
Department of Municipal and
Director of Communications
Department of Environment and
Boil Water Advisories in Newfoundland and Labrador
Boil Water Advisories (BWAs) are issued on public drinking water systems where there is a known or perceived risk of microbiological contamination.
There are 21 standard reasons why a BWA may be issued for a public drinking water system in this province. These, along with further information on Boil Water Advisories, can be found online at www.env.gov.nl.ca/env/waterres/quality/drinkingwater/advisory_fact_sheet.html.
As of July 14, 2015 there were 222 BWAs in place. There are approximately 168 communities affected by these BWAs, serving a population of about 73,746.
There are currently 521 public drinking water systems being operated and maintained by approximately 364 communities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador. The majority of BWAs that are issued throughout the province are on public drinking water systems classified as small or very small, in communities with fiscal capacity challenges or without a certified operator.
From 2001 to 2006, the number of BWAs in the province decreased by approximately 100. However, since 2006 the number of BWAs has remained at a fairly consistent level.
2015 07 23 10:50 a.m.