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What travels in water?

Updated: Aug 20, 2021

creek with small waterfall

As water flows, it collects and transports substances from the land to our lakes, rivers and streams. These substances can include nutrients, sediments, pet and animal wastes, pesticides, fertilizer excess, automobile fluids, de-icing products, grass clippings, cigarette butts and other litter. As these substances enter the watershed, they can reduce water quality, affecting the health of all who live in the watershed. Protecting water on the land is an important strategy to reduce the transport of substances into our watershed.

water flowing out of a hose

Pollution enters the Lake Winnipeg watershed from many sources

Polluted runoff is commonly referred to as point or non-point source. Point source is direct and can be identified at the source. Non-point source enters from multiple sources across urban and agricultural land. Most nutrients entering the Lake Winnipeg watershed are from non-point source contributors and much harder to address.

101,592 sq km of lakes and rivers in Manitoba

With 101,592 square kilometres of water in lakes and rivers, fresh water is one of Manitoba's significant natural resources. We have abundant fresh water to keep our environment healthy, our economy strong, and our citizens happy. Our daily actions and choices can harm or benefit the Lake Winnipeg watershed. We mustn't take water for granted, or we could lose our extraordinary water inheritance.

You can make a difference by keeping runoff from entering nearby waterways, drains and ditches. You can:

  • Set up a rain barrel to collect and save water for later use in your garden or on your lawn

  • Reduce nutrient runoff by using the right source of fertilizer at the right rate, the right time and the right place

  • Avoid putting used oil, other chemicals, or harmful substances (like excess fertilizers) down any drains or in drainage ditches

  • Minimize your daily water use: turn off the tap when you are brushing your teeth and soaping up

For more Lake Friendly actions, visit our website and learn to do what matters.


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