Windsor's Quality Water

Of course we use water every day of our lives. We use it as a source of nutrition; we use it for recreation; and we use it for a number of different activities in our homes and while we're at school. Have you ever visited another country and been warned not to drink water from the tap, or not to eat fruits and vegetables that can't be peeled first? These countries have water that is polluted, and treatments that are not advanced enough to deliver the healthy water that humans require; 80% of the diseases in developing nations are water-related.

Here in Essex County, we are fortunate enough to have access to clean, safe and reliable water - Canada is one of the few countries that has this luxury.

Water Quality in Windsor

In the City of Windsor we follow very strict rules when it comes to the quality of our drinking water. We use a neat process called Ozonation to ensure that our water looks good, tastes good, and is generally free from bad smells or colours.

Measuring Water Quality

Scientists collect samples of water and living organisms from a lake or stream and analyse them in a laboratory with special instruments. Some of their instruments are so exceptional that they can detect one-thousandth of a teaspoon of salt in an Olympic-size swimming pool.

What affects Water Quality?

First, we need to remember that we need a different "quality" of water for some of the different ways we use it - not all water needs to be suitable for drinking. For example, we can swim in water from the Ocean or the Lake, but we should not necessarily drink it or use it for cooking if it has not been treated first. Same goes for the water we use to irrigate our crops - that is why it is so important to always wash fruits and vegetables before we eat them.

There are a number of factors that can affect our water quality: chemicals, animal wastes and fertilizers that run-off from rural land, garbage and debris from city streets, waste from industries, things we dump down the drains in our homes, and much more. We always have to remember that everything we dump down the drain will eventually make its way into our drinking water supply. In fact, things we dump down road side storm drains do not even go to the sewage treatment plant before entering our natural waterways.

Try to find alternatives to using hazardous wastes and dispose of them properly if they are used.

Help our Water Quality!

Wasteful water use hurts our rivers. You can make wise water choices that can really improve our environment:

  • Don't pour anything down your storm sewers - that water goes directly into our rivers, lakes and streams untreated, so always be sure to properly dispose of hazardous waste.
  • Be sure to pick up after your pet. Leaving pet waste on the lawn can wash E. coli bacteria into our rivers, lakes and streams, which are the sources of our drinking water!
  • Consider using a rain barrel. In addition to saving rainwater to use for gardens and lawn watering instead of your municipally treated water, it also helps to prevent excess rainwater from washing motor oil and other particles from your driveway and roadways down the sewer.
  • Never hose down your driveway - sweep it instead! As well as conserving water, this also reduces storm runoff into storm sewers.
  • Consider natural gardening alternatives! Again, fertilizer, pesticides and herbicides can runoff from our lawns into our rivers, lakes and streams. You can still have a green and healthy lawn without using chemicals that can contaminate our sources of drinking water.
  • Don't flush pharmaceuticals down your toilet. Instead, return unused medications to your pharmacist for proper disposal.