Why do we need a Municipal Water Strategy?

    Surface water and groundwater resources throughout the Municipality need to be protected and managed responsibly to ensure their long-term sustainability. To achieve this goal, we must manage quantity and quality issues, act as stewards of both our natural environment and of the economic and physical needs our residents. Climate change, sea level rise, and future growth and development all create different demands and complex issues requiring proactive management of our water resources. Ultimately, the Municipal Water Strategy will provide a framework for a comprehensive and integrated approach to water management in the Municipality.

    What is the Municipal Water Strategy?

    The purpose of a Municipal Water Strategy is to coordinate a range of initiatives that will support efforts to provide safe and sufficient surface water and groundwater resources throughout the Municipality of Chester. As our rural municipality covers a relatively wide area and includes a range of communities with different needs, challenges, and opportunities, the Municipal Water Strategy will guide how Council and Municipal staff works to align programs, resources, and stakeholders to achieve safe, secure, and sustainable water resources in our communities. Approaches may include, but are not limited to: education programs, voluntary and regulatory measures, policy development, and investment in infrastructure.

    What was the purpose of the Resident Water Survey?

    An important first step in developing a responsive Water Strategy is to understand residents’ current perspectives and needs concerning water resources and water conservation. To that end, we developed the Resident Water Survey to solicit residents’ perceptions, attitudes, and opinions about water. The survey was conducted from April 10 to June 5, 2020. Residents and businesses were able to complete the survey in one of two ways: as a hardcopy form mailed to every household in the Municipality, and online via the Voices & Choices Municipal Water Strategy project page.

    The objectives for the Resident Water Survey was to:

    1. Determine residents’ knowledge regarding water usage, conservation, quality, and quantity
    2. Determine residents’ concerns regarding water usage, conservation, quality, and quantity
    3. Determine residents’ current water conservation practices
    4. Determine barriers preventing residents from implementing water conservation practices 
    5. Determine residents’ level of support for the general principles informing a Municipal Water Strategy and Action Plan

    Are the results of the Resident Water Survey available for review?

    Coastal Action, a conservation organization with 25 years of experience in environmental monitoring and management, reviewed all 1,220 completed surveys, conducted analysis of the results, and produced the Resident Water Survey Report. The full report is available in the Document Library of this Municipal Water Strategy project page.

    The data acquired through the Resident Water Survey provides us with a better understanding of residents’ current perceptions, attitudes, and opinions about water. The Municipality will use this data to develop programs, services, and projects that work to address residents' needs for water supply, water conservation, water protection, and drought management. Watch for Quick Polls and other highlights from the report as we seek you your questions, comments, and ideas!