In recognition of Canada’s inaugural Water Week and World Water Day, March 22, Premier Darrell Dexter is encouraging businesses, communities and all Nova Scotians to work together to improve water stewardship and conservation.
“We’re so fortunate to live in Nova Scotia, where we enjoy an abundance of clean, fresh water. Water is essential for life, and a vital resource to ensuring healthy communities and a strong, prosperous economy,” said Premier Dexter.
“Canada Water Week is an opportunity for us to celebrate our water resources and think about how we can work together to protect our water supply for today and for our future.”
Last August, premiers approved the Council of the Federation’s water charter and initiated Canada Water Week. This year’s theme is Celebrating and Conserving Water Across Our Country. Provinces and territories are holding events and activities to draw attention to the importance of water for Canada’s prosperity.
In Nova Scotia, the Department of Environment announced prizes of $500 for 4-H youth when they participate in community water projects such as a stream clean up, visiting a water treatment facility, conducting water testing, or carrying out water conservation practices.
Last December, the province launched its water resource management strategy, Water for Life. The strategy provides a 10 year framework for water management with 29 steps to ensure Nova Scotians have access to clean, safe and abundant water supply.
A number of water projects have been initiated as a result of the strategy.
– The province provided a $29,000 grant to Dalhousie University to collect information on major watersheds. The Watershed Assessment Program will help to evaluate the state of watersheds in Nova Scotia.
– The Ecology Action Centre will be promoting community-based groundwater monitoring and raising awareness about groundwater throughout Nova Scotia. The RBC Blue Water Project provided the majority of funding. The province provided $12,000 in grants and assistance, including training, and use of monitoring equipment.
– Saint Mary’s University received a $25,000 provincial grant to develop a pilot project to provide communities with tools and skills to monitor water quality. The project will be led by the university’s Community Based Environmental Monitoring Network.
“This water monitoring program will give Nova Scotians the tools they need to better understand the quality and quantity of our water resources,” said Cathy Conrad, associate professor and chair of the department of Geography at Saint Mary’s University. “Our work will provide valuable watershed information for all Nova Scotians so we can work to protect and conserve our water.”
Nova Scotia is home to more than 13,000 kilometres of coastline, thousands of lakes, numerous river systems, wetlands, and groundwater resources.
For information on Nova Scotia’s water resource management strategy Water for Life, visit waterforlife.gov.ns.ca.