If you “take water” in Ontario, there is a potential charge for this taking (Ontario’s Water Taking Regulation [O. Reg. 387/04]). The idea of this user fee for water consumption was to pass some of the costs of water quality management to large users of water. Further, the thought was, that attaching a fee to water use would encourage conservation of water. For more information on water takings permits, see our Environmental Minute, “Do You Need a Permit to Take Water?”
Phase I of the water taking program in Ontario affected only about 100 facilities in the Province. However, as spelled out in the 2012 Ontario Budget, “Implementing Phase 2 of the program will expand the user-pay base and apply the charge to most of the remaining industrial and commercial water users in Ontario. Some of the affected sectors include construction, petroleum, mining, food production and recreational facilities. The charge rate to be paid by Phase 2 facilities will be determined as part of the program review.”
So do you need a permit to take water? If you are not sure or if you have questions about water taking permits, contact Andrew Tymec (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 519-979-7300.