Deprecated: mysql_connect(): The mysql extension is deprecated and will be removed in the future: use mysqli or PDO instead in /mnt/stor2-wc1-dfw1/398465/453240/www.waterpolicy.ca/web/content/modules/class.database.php on line 263
The Living Water Policy Project
By Province
Federal
Compare Provinces
Alberta British Columbia Manitoba New Brunswick Newfoundland Northwest Territories Nova Scotia Nunavut Ontario PEI Québec Saskatchewan Yukon

RECENT WATER
POLICY SITE UPDATES


Small Font
Medium Font
Large Font

This Page summarizes all recent water policy changes contained within this site into a chronologically ordered list. if you would like to compare water policy between up to three provinces please use the widget on the right.
water policy updates
date filter:

(click any province or title below to open further policy details in a new window)

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /mnt/stor2-wc1-dfw1/398465/453240/www.waterpolicy.ca/web/content/modules/class.inputfilter.php on line 253

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /mnt/stor2-wc1-dfw1/398465/453240/www.waterpolicy.ca/web/content/modules/class.inputfilter.php on line 255

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /mnt/stor2-wc1-dfw1/398465/453240/www.waterpolicy.ca/web/content/modules/class.inputfilter.php on line 253

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /mnt/stor2-wc1-dfw1/398465/453240/www.waterpolicy.ca/web/content/modules/class.inputfilter.php on line 255
Province/territory: Ontario
category: References (Jul 07/14)
+

Document Disclaimer:

Every effort has been made to ensure complete accuracy of the content of this briefing note but this document is only a summary and should not be considered legal or planning advice.  Please refer to the relevant legislation and regulations for further information.

References

Capital Investment Plan Act, 1993, S.O. 1993, c.23.   Clean Water Act, 2006, S.O. 2006, c.22.   Conservation Authority. (2009). Watershed Reporting. Retrieved online March 29, 2010   from, http://www.conservation-ontario.on.ca/watershed_monitoring/index.html   Drainage Act, R.S.O. 1990.   Small Drinking Water Systems, O. Reg. 318/08, (Health Protection and Promotion Act)   Environmental Bill of Rights, 1993, S.O. 1993, c.28.   Environmental Commissioner. (2010). Environmental Commissioner website. Retrieved    March, 29, 2010 from http://www.eco.on.ca/eng/ Financial Plans, O. Reg. 453/07, (Safe Drinking Water Act, 2002)   Government of Canada and Government of Ontario. (2002). Canada-Ontario 2002 Agreement Respecting the Great Lakes Basin Ecosystem and Annexes. Retrieved March 29, 2010 from http://www.on.ec.gc.ca/coa/agreement_e.html   Government of Ontario. (2003). Ontario Low Water Response Plan. Retrieved March 29, 2010, from             http://www.omafra.gov.on.ca/english/environment/facts/low_waterbr.htm   Government of Ontario. (2007). Go Green: Ontario's Action Plan on Climate Change.      Retrieved March 29, 2010 from http://www.ene.gov.on.ca/publications/6445e.pdf Government of Ontario. (2010) Speech from the Throne. Retrieved March 29, 2010 from            http://www.premier.gov.on.ca/news/event.php?ItemID=11282&Lang=En  

Government of Ontario. (2011) Climate Ready: Ontario's Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan 2011 - 2014. Retrieved April 25, 2011 from http://www.ene.gov.on.ca/environment/en/resources/STDPROD_081665.html

  Great Lake States and Province of Ontario and Quebec. (2005). Great Lakes-St.    Lawrence River Basin Sustainable Water Resources Agreement. Retrieved March   29, 2010 from, http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/200040.pdf   Green Energy Act, 2009, S.O. 2009, c. 12   Health Protection and Promotion Act, R.S.O. 1990, c.H.7.   Health Protection and Promotion Act (O.Reg.  319/08).   Lakes and Rivers Improvement Act, R.S.O. 1990, c.L.3.   Lake Simcoe Protection Act, 2008, S.O. 2008, c. 23   Licensing of Sewage Works Operators Regulation (2004).   Ministry of the Environment. (2005). Permit to Take Water (PTTW) Manual. Retrieved     March 29, 2010 from http://74.125.93.132/search?q=cache:B5doyGutTjkJ:www.ene.gov.on.ca/envision/gp/4932e.pdf+Permit+to+Take+Water+%28PTTW%29+Manual&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=firefox-a.   Ministry of the Environment. (2009).  Stewardship, Leadership, Accountability:      Managing Ontario's Water Resources for Future Generations. Retrieved March             29, 2010 from http://www.ebr.gov.on.ca/ERS-WEB-  External/displaynoticecontent.do?noticeId=MTA2Mjcx&statusId=MTU5Mzc3   Ministry of the Environment. (2003). Stormwater Management Planning and Design         Manual. Retrieved March 29, 2010 from              http://www.ene.gov.on.ca/envision/gp/4329eindex.htm.   Ministry of the Environment. (2010). Statement of Environmental Values. Retrieved March 29, 2010 from, http://www.ebr.gov.on.ca/ERS-WEB-External/content/sev.jsp?pageName=sevList&subPageName=10001   Municipal Water and Sewage Transfer Act, 1997, S.O. 1997, c.6.   Nutrient Management Act, 2002, S.O. 2002, c.4.   Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Act, 2001, S.O. 2001, c. 31   Ontario Water Resources Act, R.S.O. 1990, c.O.40.   Ontario Water Resources Act (O.Reg. 129/04).   Ontario Water Resources Act (O.Reg 223/07).   Water Taking, O. Reg. 387/04, (Ontario Water Resources Act)   Safe Drinking Water Act, 2002, S.O. 2002, c.32.   Safe Drinking Water Act, 2002 (O.Reg. 170/03).   Safeguarding and Sustaining Ontario's Water Act, 2007, S.O. 2007.   Sustainable Water and Sewage Systems Act, 2002, S.O. 2002, c.29.   Water Transfer Control Act R.S.O. 1990, CHAPTER W.4   Water Taking and Transfer Regulation (O.Reg. 387/04)   Wells Regulation (O.Reg. 903)    
Province/territory: Ontario
category: Climate Change Linkage (Jul 07/14)
+
Climate Ready: Ontario's Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan 2011 - 2014 (2011) focuses significantly on adaptation of Ontario's water infrastructure, management and emergency responses to water resources.

The new Green Energy Act (2009) does tie energy efficiency saving to water conservation. In August 2007, the Ontario government released a climate change strategy entitled Go Green: Ontario's Action Plan on Climate Change. The Ontario Government is planning provincial greenhouse gas reduction targets.  The Government of Ontario, Ministry of Natural Resources nor the Ministry of the Environment has produced an approved climate change adaptation strategy. Under the 2007 Canada-Ontario Agreement Respecting the Great Lakes Basin Ecosystem (Government of Canada and Ontario, 2002) there is a focus on determining the impacts of climate change.  This agreement has been extended to 2011. The Clean Water Act (2006) requires conservation authorities to consider threats to water quality and quantity by such things as climate change. 


Province/territory: Ontario
category: Interbasin Transfers (Jul 07/14)
+
Since 1999, water transfers out of Ontario's three main basins (Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River Basin, Nelson Basin, and Hudson Basin) have been prohibited subject to several exceptions. The exceptions are outlined in section 34.3(3) of the Ontario Water Resources Act (1990):

  • the water is in a container of 20 litres or less;
  • the water is incorporated into a product, which is then transferred out of the basin;
  • the water is necessary for the operation of a vehicle, vessel or other form of transport, or for the passengers or livestock on board;
  • the water is used for fire-fighting or other emergency purposes;
  • the transfer commenced before January 1, 1998 and the annual volume of water transferred does not exceed the highest amount of water transferred annually prior to 1998; or
  • the water is transferred pursuant to the 1913 Order of the Lieutenant Governor in Council respecting the Greater Winnipeg Water District.
  In addition to existing interbasin restrictions, intrabasin restrictions will also come into effect when Ontario Water Resources Act (1990) amendments are proclaimed-pursuant to the Safeguarding and Sustaining Ontario's Water Act (2007).  This Bill implemented the terms of the Great Lakes - St. Lawrence River Basin Sustainable Water Resources Agreement (2005).  
Province/territory: Ontario
category: Ecosystem Quantity Needs (Jul 07/14)
+
The Environmental Bill of Rights (1993) requires government ministries engaged in environmental management to develop Statements of Environmental Values, which is the framework used by the ministry when making decisions affecting the environment. The Government of Ontario, Ministry of the Environment, for example, "adopts an ecosystem approach to environmental protection and resource management" (Ministry of Environment, 2010, online) the ministry has also committed to considering the cumulative effects on the environment and implementing the precautionary principle. Such values are supposed to apply as the ministry develops Acts, regulations, and policies.

Those Annexes under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement are specifically designed to protect aquatic ecosystem health.  Protection for aquatic ecosystems is also to be considered in the Permit to Take Water application process.   The Lake Simcoe Protection Act (2008) has a goal of watershed protection and to protect cold water fisheries. 
Province/territory: Ontario
category: Water Conservation Strategy (Jul 07/14)
+
A policy proposal addressing water conservation strategies is currently up for public comment on the Environmental Registry. The Government of Ontario, Ministry of the Environment and Ministry of Natural Resources have developed proposals under the Stewardship, Leadership, and Accountability: Managing Ontario's Water Resources for Future Generations Policy (2009). These proposals are designed to improve three key elements of water management in Ontario, specifically by: (a) developing a water conservation and efficiency strategy for Ontario, (b) strengthening the regulation of new and increased intrabasin transfers, and (c) implementing phase two of the province's water charges program that would extend existing charges to more commercial and industrial users. This policy is meant to implement commitments made under the Great Lakes - St. Lawrence River Basin Sustainable Water Resources Agreement (2005).

Ontario already has in place a drought response strategy. The government has created the Ontario Low Water Response Plan (Government of Ontario, 2003) to ensure local response strategies are in place. Water Response Teams are developed to respond to low water conditions by determining relative importance of users in accordance with the plan. This response plan is currently being reviewed, and there is a proposal on the Environmental Registry.  The Government of Ontario also requires water conservation plans under the Oakridges Moraine Act (2001) and the Lake Simcoe Act (2008). Provincial or territorial policies and strategies do not apply or include First Nations reserves or communities. Learn more about Ontario's conservation initiatives and requirements from the Alliance for Water Efficiency.atives and requirements from the Alliance for Water Efficiency.

Province/territory: Ontario
category: Ecosystem Quality Needs (Jul 07/14)
+
The Stormwater Management Planning and Design Manual (Government of Ontario, 2003), includes many considerations regarding ecosystem quality needs in the discharge of water. More generally, direct or indirect discharges into water that impair the resource are offences under the Ontario Water Resources Act (1990).  Section 1(3) of the Ontario Water Resources Act (1990) outlines the various factors that determine whether the quality of water is deemed impaired by a discharge of any sort. Such factors include determining whether any living organism is injured by the discharge, if the discharge is scientifically considered toxic, and if peer-reviewed scientific publications indicate that the discharge will interfere with organisms dependent on aquatic ecosystems.  Any discharge also requires a certificate of approval under the Ontario Water Resources Act (1990).


Province/territory: Ontario
category: Storm/Waste Water Management (Jul 07/14)
+
The Ontario Water Resources Act (1990) applies to stormwater and wastewater management. A Certificate of Approval is required for direct discharges into lakes and rivers. There is a Stormwater Management Planning and Design Manual (Government of Ontario, 2003) available with technical and procedural guidance on stormwater management practices and treatment and technology approaches. Municipalities are left to turn these guidelines into strategies for their communities.

The Government of Ontario, Ministry of the Environment and a number of other organizations developed the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Handbook (as cited in Government of Ontario, Ministry of the Environment, 2008) in order to provide municipalities, conservation authorities, community groups, businesses and individuals with information on implementing pollution prevention and flow reduction programs for stormwater runoff and combined sewer overflows. The Licensing of Sewage Works Operators Regulation (2004) sets out the licensing of sewage works operators and operating standards. When the new Sustainable Water and Sewage Systems Act (2002) is proclaimed in force, municipalities will be able to finance essential water and sewer services and ensure clean and safe drinking water. This Act makes the cost recovery for providing water and sewage services mandatory. For now, the Financial Plans Regulation (2002) is being used in place of the Sustainable Water and Sewage Systems Act (2002). It is unclear whether this is just a transitional regulation until the province is ready to proclaim Sustainable Water and Sewage Systems Act in force. Provincial or territorial policies and strategies do not apply or include First Nations reserves or communities. 
Province/territory: Ontario
category: Wellfield Protection (Jul 07/14)
+
Ontario's Wells Regulation (1990) under the Ontario Water Resources Act (1990) sets rules regarding where wells can be constructed and who can construct or work on a well. For drilled wells, a Ministry of the Environment licensed well contractor or technician must construct the well. There are set construction standards for all new wells. If a well supplies water to multiple residents, the owner or operator may be subject to the Drinking Water Systems Regulation (2008).  As of 2003, new drinking water wells must be affixed with a well tag.

Source water protection applies to both groundwater and surface water. 
Province/territory: Ontario
category: Groundwater Permitting (Jul 07/14)
+
The permitting process for groundwater follows the same Permit to Take Water process as surface water. Groundwater takings are divided into Category 1, 2, and 3, as are surface water takings. Category 1 applications are for takings not likely to have adverse environmental impacts (there are various further specifications for the bodies of water to be considered category 1). Category 2 and 3 applications require the submission of scientific evaluations, technical screening and Ministry evaluations. See the Ontario Water Resources Act (1990), and the Permit to Take Water Manual (2005).

Like surface water, a Permit to Take Water must be obtained in order to withdraw more than 50,000 litres per day, subject to the exceptions. Terms and conditions are set out in the Permit to Take Water Regulation (2004). One general right for groundwater users is if new takings interfere with existing uses, the new permit holder is required to restore the supply or reduce the taking so as to alleviate the interference. Provincial permitting processes do not apply to Federal lands such as First Nations reserves and communities.

Province/territory: Ontario
category: Source Water Protection (Jul 07/14)
+
The Clean Water Act (2006) requires the creation of source protection committees for source protection areas. These committees must prepare an assessment report and source protection plan. Policies set out in the source protection plan may prohibit land use or other activities if the activity constitutes a significant drinking water threat.  Under the Clean Water Act (2006) the source protection committees are also required to investigate potential threats. 

Source water protection policy does not address protection of First Nations water. 
                        Next 10
Build a table comparing policy to any of the following provinces & territories: (MAX of 3)
Alberta

British Columbia

Manitoba

New Brunswick

Newfoundland

Northwest Territories

Nova Scotia

Nunavut

Ontario

Prince Edward Island

Québec

Saskatchewan

Yukon