Source Water Protection

The Town of New Tecumseth is working towards realizing the Source Water Protection Plan to meet the requirements of Ontario's Clean Water Act, 2006. We are part of the South Georgian Bay Lake Simcoe Source Protection Region.

South Georgian Bay Lake Simcoe Source Protection Plan

The South Georgian Bay Lake Simcoe Source Protection Plan and the Clean Water Act include a range of policies to protect our drinking water sources. The Clean Water Act is one of Ontario's responses to the Walkerton water contamination tragedy and includes how we can preserve drinking water from source to tap.

The Source Water Protection Plan applies to activities that can pose a risk of contaminating drinking water sources near surface water intake protection zones and wellhead protection areas (vulnerable areas). Learn about the potential risks to our vulnerable areas.

Treatment plant

Our drinking water is filtered through treatment plants where we remove most contaminants. This process is expensive and time consuming, so protecting water sources and reducing pollutants at the source is one of the most cost-effective ways to protect our water. Learn more about how we preserve our water quality.


Groundwater is a large source of the drinking water within the Town. It flows and collects in cracks and spaces in soil, sand and rock. If the groundwater water supplies run out, it puts a strain on drinking water and can impact surface water sources like lakes and rivers.

Recharge zones

We must refill and replenish any removed groundwater. This area of replenishment is known as the recharge zone, which is a naturally-occurring permeable basin that can include:

  • Forested land
  • Grassy areas
  • Natural surfaces

Water in the recharge zone collects slowly as rain and snow seep into the ground and back into the groundwater.

Pavement and asphalt

Solid surfaces like pavement or asphalt can stop rain and snow from soaking back into the ground naturally. Water flows across these hard surfaces and picks up pollutants that would normally be filtered out. Part of protecting our water quality is to create and enhance water permeability to reduce pollution runoff.

What you can do

There are many ways that you can protect drinking water sources, including:

  • Maintaining septic systems;
  • Disposing of hazardous waste properly;
  • Minimizing the use of pesticides, fertilizers and de-icing salt; and/or,
  • Storing fuels properly.

Septic inspections

We inspect septic systems in certain areas of the Town. We will send you a letter to let you know if we require an inspection. If your septic system is not functioning properly and you are located within 100 metres of a municipal well, please contact us to see if you are required to fix the issue.


Farmers can also protect groundwater sources by:

  • Controlling field and stream bank erosion
  • Using safe storage and handling systems for manure
  • Creating a nutrient management plan
  • Controlling barnyard runoff and diverting clean water

If your farm is within a vulnerable area, you may need to complete a Risk Management Plan. Please contact us for more information.