Friday, July 13, 2012
County of Oxford
Public Works Is Asking People To Cut Back On Outdoor Water Use
County of Oxford Public Works is asking people to cut back on outdoor water use as municipal water reserves begin to show signs of strain from recent hot, dry weather. Last year, about 250 million litres of water was used on Oxford County lawns and gardens, making it one of the biggest uses of municipal water.
This year for the first time communities can track the status of their water systems online at www.oxfordcounty.ca/howmuch. The new online tool shows Oxford County’s 19 municipal water systems as either:
- Green, with typical water usage well within system capacity;
- Yellow, showing that the community is using more water than it typically does in the summer; or
- Red, which shows that the increased usage is placing a strain on the system.
In response to low stream levels and the lack of rainfall in recent weeks, local conservation authorities have asked the County to reduce water takings in its municipal systems by 20%. As a result, Public Works is asking all residents to cut back on outdoor water use to once per week according to the last digit of their municipal street address as follows:
0 or 1 - outside water use allowed on Mondays (6-9 am / 6-9 pm)
2 or 3 - outside water use allowed on Tuesdays (6-9 am / 6-9 pm)
4 or 5 - outside water use allowed on Wednesdays (6-9 am / 6-9 pm)
6 or 7 - outside water use allowed on Thursdays (6-9 am / 6-9 pm)
8 or 9 - outside water use allowed on Fridays (6-9 am / 6-9 pm)
If decreases in usage are not observed, mandatory restrictions may be imposed. In particular the community of Thamesford is a concern as usage is currently in the “red” level.
For tips on water-efficient lawn and garden care visit www.oxfordcounty.ca/water. For updates on municipal water systems, visit www.oxfordcounty.ca/howmuch or follow the County of Oxford on Twitter at http://twitter.com/oxfordcounty.
“The County is beginning to focus more of its conservation efforts on education: we believe that the more knowledge people have about our municipal water system, the more likely they will be to help conserve water. The new online tool is designed to give people information they can use to be proactive about water use, so they can take steps as a community to ensure the continued reliability of their water system.”
- Rob Walton, Director, Public Works, County of Oxford
“We know that in hot, dry weather many people want to take full advantage of their watering hours, but that amount of use is not sustainable. If residents can limit lawn watering to one thorough watering a week, that is enough to maintain a healthy lawn while helping to conserve a limited natural resource.”
- Deborah Goudreau, Manager, Water Services, County of Oxford
The County of Oxford's water conservation program runs May 1 to September 30 each year. The program places time-of-day limits on residential and commercial/industrial outdoor water use with fines and/or reduced water pressure as potential penalties for not complying.
519-539-9800 ext 3505