Watering restrictions begin in Kingston this week

The City of Kingston’s annual seasonal watering restrictions go into effect on Tuesday, Jun. 15, 2021. Until September 15, residents and businesses with odd-numbered addresses may water on odd-numbered days, while evens may water on even-numbered days. 

The City of Kingston’s Water By-law allows residents and businesses to: 

  • Use a hand-held hose, can or bucket any time on their scheduled day 
  • Use a sprinkler between 5 a.m. and 10 a.m. on their scheduled day 
  • Use water from their rain barrel anytime! 

“We recognize that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are staying home and gardening this year. Yet abiding by watering restrictions is an important community effort that helps ensure adequate supply for fire protection, and we thank you,” said Kingston Fire & Rescue Fire Chief Shawn Armstrong.   

Water and wastewater treatment infrastructure is built to handle peak demand times, according to a release from Utilities Kingston, dated Monday, Jun. 14, 2021. During the summer, Kingstonians use the most treated water from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  

“Reducing the use of treated water during times when the demand is highest helps ensure reliable supply for adequate water reserves and pressure, and fire protection. It also helps manage the need to expand water treatment infrastructure,” said Heather Roberts, Director of Water and Wastewater Services for Utilities Kingston. 

Reducing outdoor water use also reduces the pollutants that end up in the lake, according to the release. This is because much of the water from sprinklers and hoses (such as, from washing cars) runs off into the storm sewer, picking up pollutants that end up in Lake Ontario, Kingston’s source of drinking water.   

Residents and businesses are encouraged to practice water-wise gardening to make every raindrop count and support Cataraqui Conservation’s appeal to conserve water, because of Level I Low Water Conditions in the area. According to the utility company, using a rain barrel, following best watering practices, amending soil with organic content, and incorporating drought-tolerant plants are just some of the sustainable practices that help reduce treated water use – all with beautiful results. (See also: Drought conditions: tips to conserve water). 

For inspiration and information, visit Utilities Kingston’s online water conservation gardening resources. Their conservation team is here to help. Call 613-546-0000 and ask to speak with Utilities Kingston conservation.  

Sometimes new yards, shrubs and trees need water at times outside the schedule which is why Utilities Kingston offers exemption permits, which can be applied for online. Visit www.utilitieskingston.com to learn more about exemption permits, how to save water and money, and when you can use outdoor treated water. The website also has a dynamic indicator that explains when residents and businesses can use hoses versus sprinkling devices, as well as many resources on water-wise gardening. 

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