Alberta’s watersheds – going right to the source


Albertans don’t always think about the water they drink, play in and rely on every day – it is often taken for granted. So where does that clean water that flows out of the tap when you turn it on come from? It depends entirely on where you live in the province!

We all live in a watershed (an area of land where the water drains to a common place), and in Alberta we have two types of watersheds.

WPACsThe prairie fed watersheds – such as the Beaver River and Battle River watersheds – which rely solely on spring runoff and rain, and the glacier fed watersheds – such as the Red Deer River or Bow River – which rely on snowpack and glacier meltwater.

Whether your tap water comes from a reservoir, a river, or even a well, it is part of the watershed you live in.

Believe it or not, many people are not aware of where their water comes from, or where it ends up after it goes down the drain.

Water drains from Canada into the Arctic, Atlantic, Pacific oceans, and even travels as far as the Gulf of Mexico. We are all downstream from someone, so the impact we make on our watershed is something to consider before making a splash!  Natl Watersheds

WabumanProvincialParkYou likely rely on Alberta’s water resources more than you think! You may have a favourite lake getaway, a bird-watching wetland or simply enjoy the luxury of hearing the trickle of a stream on an evening walk. Water is more than a resource; it’s a life source! We all share the responsibility to ensure a healthy, secure and sustainable water supply for our communities, environment and economy.

If you’re curious about water and all the ways it keeps our lives flowing, watch for #ABWater on social media – we’ll be ramping up educational posts as part of World Water Day, March 22, 2017.

WomanDrinkingWaterPromoting our province’s water through this campaign is one way we are working to help increase the understanding of the significance of water in life for all Albertans. Increasing our water literacy gives us a better understanding of where water comes from and how we can use it wisely and sustainably.

2 thoughts on “Alberta’s watersheds – going right to the source

  1. Good start on water issues. How about describing the impacts of forest canopy on snow melt, flood & drought regimes, cumulative impacts of sediment from disturbed riparian areas (roads, OHVs, livestock grazing, logging & coal mines).and the importance of ground water for winter flow?

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