As the region grows, so does the demand for drinking water. Our message: be water wise and help look after this important resource.
Water Efficiency Master Plan 2015-2025
We are currently working on a new plan that will guide our water conservation programs for several years. Visit our master plan site to see the proposed programs and give us your input.
Outdoor water conservation
During summer months, water use can increase by up to 50 per cent. Learn ways to use less water for outdoor activities. Click on any of the following topics for more information:
Water Conservation bylaw:
In effect from May 31 to Sept. 30. By following the Region's Water Conservation Bylaw 07-069 (and amendments), which limit outdoor water use to specific days and times, you help to reduce peak water use and limit the risk of an outdoor watering ban.
Rain Harvesting Week
The first annual Rainwater Harvesting Week was held from April 21-27, 2013. During this week, residents were presented with a number of rainwater harvesting options through local retailers. The advertising features also included information about stormwater credits. Link to the special supplement online here.
Rainwater collection using barrels and harvesting tanks is a great way to save water. Check with local retailers for options available. Also check with your city public works department to see if you qualify for a storm sewer surcharge credit if you are currently using rain barrels.
Rain Barrel Distribution
April 28, 2012 marked the Region's last single-day rain barrel sale. Over the 12-year program, nearly 50,000 rain barrels were distributed to the community. Stay tuned to this site for new rainwater harvesting programming from the Region in the future. The Region of Waterloo encourages residents to harvest rainwater by purchasing a rain barrel at your local hardware store, not-for-profit sales or building your own barrel.
Indoor water conservation
One way we can conserve water is by replacing old toilets. The toilet is the single biggest user of water in the home. Replacing an old toilet with a Region-approved high-efficiency toilet lets you save water and receive a $20 rebate. Check our requirements below.
Toilet Replacement Program:
Note: Landlords, churches, non-profits and businesses may also qualify for rebates. Call 519-575-4021 to register. These groups should not use the homeowner application.
Also note that it is important to check for leaks around your home. Your toilet can silently leak up to 300 litres a day and cost you a lot of money.
Check if your toilet is leaking (PDF)
Residents of Waterloo Region tend to use water softeners since we get most of our water from the ground where the hardness can clog up pipes and harm appliances over time. But not all water softeners are the same and some use much more water and salt to remove hardness than others do. The Region of Waterloo and the City of Guelph worked together to test various softeners to rate how much salt and water they use to do their job.
Visit our Water Softener Facts website for full test reports, hardness maps and more.
Learn more about environmental programs in the Region of Waterloo by reading our award-winning publication. The Spring 2013 edition is here.
Help for business
Our Water Efficient Technology (W.E.T.) Program provides commercial, industrial and institutional-sector companies with ways to reduce water and the associated energy costs. Following are some of the W.E.T. program benefits:
Technology upgrade and replacement:
To view case studies on businesses that have taken advantage of the program, please click below:
Community & schools
To encourage conservation, the Region offers funding to local cities and townships. We also prepare educational material for teachers, environmental groups and others interested in learning more about water.
Cities & Townships: funding is provided for a water distribution system leak program.
Educational resources: Fun, water-related activities for children and free materials adapted for different age groups to help teachers and environmental groups discuss water protection and conservation are available at no cost. For more information, visit our Teacher Resources page.