Source Water Protection

Source water is the water that Water Treatment Plants use to supply us with safe, clean drinking water. In the Essex Region, our municipal drinking water comes from Lake Erie, Lake St . Clair and the Detroit River. There are eight municipal Water Treatment Plants (WTPs) that serve over 95% of the population in the Essex region. The remaining population, less than 5%, depends on groundwater or hauled water.

Drinking Water Source Protection has been identified as the first line of defense in protecting drinking water. The Essex Region Source Protection Plan is a local watershed-based plan developed by a Source Protection Committee in consultation with municipalities, community groups and residents. Following the Clean Water Act, 2006, the Plan contains policies to ensure that identified potential risks are prohibited, or managed in a way that protects our drinking water. Following an extensive process that included broad public input, the Essex Region SPP came into effect on October 1, 2015.

For information on the origin of Source Water Protection and what it means for the Essex Region, check out this pre-recorded session that was provided to new SPC members in October, 2020.

Use our online mapping tool or the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks’ interactive mapping tool to determine if your property is in a vulnerable area and what policies apply.

We all have a role to play in caring for our water. If we want clean water tomorrow, we need to protect our water sources today.

Email Contacts:

Source Water Protection
Risk Management