Water Services Department

    Metro Vancouver provides a reliable source of safe, high-quality drinking water to our member municipalities at a reasonable cost by acquiring and maintaining the supply, treating it to ensure its quality and delivering it to the municipalities.

    We use a system of watersheds, dams, reservoirs, pump stations and water mains. To maintain the quality and reliability of these systems and of the supply, improvements are constantly underway.

 We Work On

  • Sources & Supply

    Water is collected from three large lakes in our watersheds, Capilano, Seymour and Coquitlam Reservoirs. The watersheds cover about 60,000 hectares of natural forests and, to ensure the high quality of our water, are protected from development and closed to public access. This water is processed through major drinking water facilities before distribution to member municipalities.
  • Quality & Major Drinking Water Facilities

    Before distribution, water is treated to extremely high standards in our publically owned and operated, world-class drinking water treatment facilities. To ensure the safety of the water, a monitoring program is in place throughout the system and we conduct over 30,000 water tests a year.
  • Conservation & Reservoir Levels

    Even though we live in a rainy city, water conservation is critical to accommodate our growing population, delay capacity and infrastructure upgrades, and reducing environmental impacts. That’s why we have lawn watering regulations, business irrigation systems and a home conservation program.
  • Construction & Maintenance

    To ensure our consistent and reliable high-quality water, we upgrade and build infrastructure to meet current and future needs. This includes seismic upgrades, leak detection programs, and creating new water connections for growing municipalities. Public involvement, community outreach and sustainable practices are key focuses of current construction projects.
  • Drinking Water Management Plan

    This over-arching plan sets the direction and priorities for drinking water initiatives for the region. Its primary goal is to provide clean, safe drinking water. It lays out the priority for drinking water initiatives such as: new infrastructure, identifying additional water supplies, and managing watersheds as natural assets.

Projects and Initiatives

  • Coquitlam Drinking Water Source Now Receives Ultra-Violet Treatment

    ​Since 2014 Metro Vancouver has been treating drinking water from the Coquitlam source with UV, in combination with Ozone. UV is highly effective in taking care of potential micro-organisms without having to use a lot of chemicals. This facility has major sustainability features, provides excellent quality drinking water and is something to be proud of.

  • Green Energy From Existing Facilities

    Metro Vancouver is exploring the potential to generate hydropower from the existing drinking water reservoir infrastructure, mainly the overspill from the Capilano and Seymour source dams. This exploration is within the context of the region’s commitment to provide clean, safe drinking water, protect fish habitat downstream and anticipate climate change impacts on our water supply.

  • Initiatives to Accommodate Fisheries in the Region’s Watersheds

    ​Metro Vancouver works with other organizations on some significant fisheries initiatives; transporting fish above the dams, collecting crucial data, assessing and enhancing off-channel habitat, funding core hatchery costs, educating visitors to the Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve and more.

  • New Under-River Tunnel to Bring Water South of the Fraser River

    ​Metro Vancouver is constantly improving and expanding our water distribution system. A current project involves installing a new water supply tunnel (3.5 metres-diametre) west of the new Port Mann Bridge to carry drinking water to growing communities south of the Fraser.

  • Summer Lawn Sprinkling Regulations are Key in Reducing Water Use

    ​Every summer our water can double, when rainfall is at its lowest. We use as much as two billion litres on the hottest days (about 1 billion on a winter day), much of it for outdoor uses like lawn sprinkling. The regulations are in effect May 15 to October 15 and are very effective in lowering our water use.

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