Surface Water

Surface water is the water that makes up our rivers, lakes and streams. SNC assesses the quality of these water bodies by measuring water chemistry (phosphorous, oxygen) and organisms that live in the sediment at the bottom of streams and rivers.

The South Nation River and many of the features that flow into it—such as municipal drains, ponds, and wetlands—make up the surface waters of the region. There are 13 surface water quality stations in our boundaries, some of which have been in place for over 60 years.

The Provincial Water Quality Monitoring Network (PWQMN) and Watershed Characterization (WC) programs are the watershed’s main sources for surface water quality data—and have been since 1964 and 1998, respectively. Both programs operate as a partnership between SNC and the Ontario Ministry of Environment.

How is your stream water quality?

SNC collects and reports on long-term data to provide you with information about the health of your surface water over time. We prepare annual technical reports and Watershed Report Cards, and a State of the Nation Report every five years as a means of summarizing the data.