Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development Goals Report, 2022
Goal 6, Clean Water and Sanitation

Release date: September 28, 2022
Sustainable Development Goals: Goal 6, Clean Water and Sanitation
Description: Sustainable Development Goals: Goal 6, Clean Water and Sanitation

Ensuring availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

Long-term drinking water advisories for public systems on Indigenous reserves

Almost half of long-term drinking water advisoriesNote 1 on public systems on Indigenous reserves south of the 60th parallel in 2021, while 7 advisories were added. At the end of 2021, 36 advisories remained in effect.

Note: Drinking water advisories are issued to warn people not to drink water that may be unsafe or is known to not be safe based on water quality test results. Drinking water advisories are considered to be long-term when they have been in place for more than one year.

Water usage in 2019

Total water usage totalled 4,866 million kilolitres, a 3% decrease since 2015. The residential sector accounted for half of total water usage. The daily residential use per capita was 215 litres, equivalent to almost 110 two-litre bottles.

The wealthiest 20% of Canadians spent almost five times more than the poorest 20% on water and sewage for their principal accommodation in 2019.

Average daily residential water use per capita, 2019

Newfoundland and Labrador had the highest per-capita residential water use.

Table 1
Table summary
This table displays the results of Table 1. The information is grouped by Geography (appearing as row headers), Litres (appearing as column headers).
Geography Litres
Newfoundland and Labrador 448
Prince Edward Island 181
Nova Scotia 170
New Brunswick 264
Quebec 262
Ontario 172
Manitoba 158
Saskatchewan 191
Alberta 176
British Columbia 274
Yukon 385
Northwest Territories 247
Nunavut 136

Water conservation practices of households in 2019

Table 2
Table summary
This table displays the results of Table 2. The information is grouped by Water conservation practice (appearing as row headers), Percentage of households (appearing as column headers).
Water conservation practice Percentage of households
Low-volume toilet 53%
Low-flow shower head 52%
Outdoor water barrel or cistern 14%

Community spotlight: Water First

Water First is a Canadian charitable organization that partners with Indigenous communities to address critical water challenges through education, training and meaningful collaboration with the aim of supporting independent local water management.

To date, Water First has collaborated with over 65 Indigenous communities across Canada. They completed 31,952 hours of training in 2021/2022 across all programs, which gave 1,220 school-aged students the opportunity to have hands-on STEM training. Its Drinking Water Internship Program is projected to train and certify 35 young Indigenous adults as water treatment plant operators by October 2022.

Sources: Statistics Canada, Biennial Drinking Water Plants Survey, 2019, Survey of Household Spending, 2019, Households and the Environment Survey, 2019; Indigenous Services Canada, Ending long-term drinking water advisories, 2022; Water First, Annual Report, 2022.

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