Regional Source Water Protection Plan
In 2007, the Municipality of East Hants implemented a plan, in accordance with Nova Scotia Environment requirements, to protect water quality in the 38,265 hectare Grand Lake watershed. This plan assesses and manages contamination risks to the source water supply of the East Hants Regional Water Utility. The utility provides drinking water to approximately 6,000 people in the communities of Enfield, Elmsdale and Lantz. There are also 2,500-3,000 residents in Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) and East Hants with private water supplies within the watershed.
The Grand Lake watershed occupies parts of both the Municipality of East Hants (14%) and the Halifax Regional Municipality (86%).
The Grand Lake watershed is among the largest drinking water watersheds in the province and is subject to a large number of environmental stressors. The main objective of the Plan is to minimize health risks to water consumers and to contribute to the maintenance of a sustainable water resource. The Plan does not seek to restrict development or impose significant land use regulations on the watershed, but rather to ensure that existing and future activities are conducted in accordance with environmental legislation and in consideration of the needs of the East Hants Regional Water Utility.
Within the Plan, the Municipality of East Hants has identified a high risk area (sub-watershed) referred to as the near zone. This zone is approximately 1,325 hectares (4% of the watershed) and may be more sensitive to water quality impacts due to its physical proximity to the water treatment plant intake.
Activities that contribute to water quality contamination: storm water pollution from domestic sources (fertilizer, vehicle chemicals, pet waste, etc.), malfunctioning and/or inadequately maintained on-site sewage treatment systems, aging and/or leaking home heating fuel tanks, and activities related to industry (forestry, agriculture, etc.).
If you are aware of any environmental incidents, compliance issues, or activities that may impact source water (i.e. malfunctioning septic systems, illegal dumpsites, excessive sedimentation from construction activities, and non-compliance with environmental legislation) you should contact Nova Scotia Environment – Environmental Monitoring and Compliance 1-877-9ENVIRO (1-877-936-8476).