What Does This Mean For Me?

All of us can do our part to safeguard the quantity and quality of drinking water, through individual actions such as installing low-flow taps and toilets or switching to non-toxic household cleaning products. You’ll find resources on this page to help homeowners and businesses alike support Ontario’s source water protection efforts.

The Ripple Effect, a fascinating 13-minute video created by Conservation Ontario, explores many of the key issues associated with source water protection, including:

  • Where our drinking water comes from
  • What happens to water before it gets to our taps
  • The origins of source water protection in Ontario
  • The multi-barrier approach to protecting source water
  • How Ontario’s conservation authorities are involved in source water protection planning

Conservation Ontario has also developed the following fact sheets to give everyone a better understanding of source water protection — and the practical steps you can take to contribute:


If your home or business is located in a vulnerable area, and you are engaged in any activity that the Clean Water Act, 2006 has identified as an existing or potential threat to drinking water, then there may be policies that affect you.

You can take the following steps to find out:

  1. Use our map search tool below to determine if your home or business is in a vulnerable area.
  2. If you are in a vulnerable area, consult the list of drinking water threat activities below. Are you carrying out any of these activities on your property?
  3. If you are carrying out any of the activities listed, please CONTACT US. We can help you determine if your specific circumstance is listed — and whether it is categorized as a “Significant,” “Moderate” or “Low” threat in your vulnerable area. (NOTE: Policies will apply to Significant drinking water threats. Policies may apply to low or moderate threats.)


Use the magnifying glass icon in the menu at the top right to search for your address



As prescribed by the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change:

1. The establishment, operation or maintenance of a waste disposal site within the meaning of Part V of the Environmental Protection Act. 10, 11. The application, handling and storage of Pesticide.
17. Handling and storage of Organic Solvents.
2. The establishment, operation or maintenance of a system that collects, stores, transmits, treats or disposes of sewage. 12, 13. The application, handling and storage of Road Salt.
18. Runoff management: chemicals to de-ice aircraft..
3, 4, 5. The application, handling and storage of Agricultural Source Material (ASM). 14. Storage of Snow.
19. Activity that takes from, but does not return water to the same aquifer or surface water body.
6, 7. The application, handling and storage of Non-Agricultural Source Material (NASM). 15. Handling and storage of fuel.
20. Activity that reduces the Recharge of an aquifer.
8, 9. The application, handling and storage of Fertilizer.
16. Handling and storage of Dense Non Aqueous Phase Liquids (DNAPL). 21. Use of land as livestock for grazing, pasturing, outdoor confinement or farm animal yard.