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City of Lethbridge taking proactive steps to conserve water

The City of Lethbridge is leading by example in water conservation efforts. The Water Conservation Plan and Strategy targets a decrease in overall water use in Lethbridge by 20 per cent by 2030. In response to potential drought conditions this year, the corporation is implementing internal water restrictions ahead of any mandated changes.

“We’re asking the community to voluntarily reduce water use, so the City must also ‘walk the walk’,” says Joel Sanchez, Director of Infrastructure Services. “We are adjusting operational practices, where practical, to conserve water.”

The City is committed to reducing its water consumption by 10 per cent. Several departmental measures are being taken to hit this target, including:

·         Cutting back on how often we wash the outsides of City fleet and transit vehicles.

·         Adjusting street sweeping practices to reduce water use, where possible.

·         Flushing hydrants only as needed for Health and Safety/operational requirements.

·         Reducing water usage when washing bridges, signs and concrete medians.

·         Turning off decorative fountains while voluntary measures and water restrictions are in place. (Public drinking water stations will remain available.)

Other departments, including Parks & Cemeteries and Recreation & Culture, are taking steps to reduce water consumption. These include managing irrigation and the maintenance of green spaces.

“The community may notice a bit more dirt on City buses, or that some public spaces may not be as green as past years,” says Mark Svenson, Manager of Engineering and Environment. “We are striking a balance between conserving water and meeting operational needs.”

City departments will track water conservation and reduction efforts during the coming months. Lethbridge City Council will receive updates on these initiatives throughout the season.

Specific actions are also included in the City’s updated Water Rationing Action Plan. Proposed bylaw amendments for the Plan go to City Council on May 14 for further discussion.

“We thank our City teams for their continued water conservation efforts,” says Sanchez. “We know a few small changes can make a big difference in protecting our water resources now, and for future generations.”

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