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What we do
Environmental Services is made up of three divisions: Wastewater Services, Water Services, and Solid Waste Resources and our mandate is to protect the environment through compliance with provincial regulatory requirements.
In Water Services, we are committed to providing residents and businesses with safe, consistent, high quality drinking water. The supply, treatment and distribution of water is supplemented with an award-winning water conservation program.
Why we do it
The Strategic Plan Sustaining our Future priority guides our protection of the quality and quantity of Guelph’s groundwater and its efficient use; as well as our climate change mitigation efforts to reduce Guelph’s carbon footprint through the diversion of waste and use methane gas, a wastewater bio-solids by-product, as a source of energy.
Our team takes a collaborative approach to the delivery of environmental services with a highly skilled workforce and financial oversight that supports the vision of Working Together for our Future priority.
We maintain water, wastewater systems and solid waste assets in good working conditions through proactive maintenance programs and aging asset replacements to sustain current levels of service to our customers, thereby contributing to the strategic priority of Building our Future.
2021 to 2024+ initiatives
- Advance continuous improvement projects and investment in data management software to drive operational efficiencies through improved mobile access of critical information as well as cross departmental corporate access.
- Ensure that Environmental Services staff remain highly trained professionals with water and wastewater operators licensed by the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks.
- Deliver Community Outreach programs that are critical in water, wastewater and solid waste to informing residents and businesses about how they can contribute to protecting the environment.
- Continue to plan and implement energy efficiency initiatives to support Council direction on zero carbon
- Continue to deliver the accelerated Water Meter Replacement Program to ensure accurate billing of customers and timely leak detection. The 2021 replacement goal is 8,000 meters.
- Implement programs and continue work to develop water quantity and quality policies to manage threats to local groundwater resources through Source Water Protection.
Operating budget—Revenues and expenses
2021 budget impacts
- $885,300 increase in user rate revenues due to growth as well as a proposed rate increase of 2.8% in 2021.
- A net zero budget adjustment to address the historical accounting of the lead program and capital recoveries. This includes revenue reductions of $837,840 offset by a reduction in the transfer to Water Capital Reserve Fund.
- $250,000 decrease in revenue related to the removal of the transfer from Water Operating Contingency Reserve which provided rate relief in 2019 and 2020.
- $107,900 net decrease in purchased services related to consulting and promotion expenses to align with current need.
- $500,000 increase in the transfer to the Water Capital Reserve Fund to continue along the path towards reaching sustainable capital infrastructure renewal funding.
- Other budget changes are inflationary in nature.
2022 to 2024 budget impacts
- Forecasted rate increase of 2.7%, 4.3% and 3.1% over the three years.
- Inflationary cost pressures related to compensation and contractual obligations.
- Annual increase to the transfer to Water Capital Reserve Fund to incrementally move towards sustainable capital infrastructure renewal funding.
- A new Water Operator to deliver services to a growing population.
- Operating impact from the activation Clythe Well capital project.
- A number of capital-related positions as a result of growth planned to be funded through the capital budget including:
- Addition of two Project Managers to assist with capital projects and addressing infrastructure growth.
- Addition of a Hydrogeologist to manage and implement the Water Supply Program.
- Addition of a SCADA Specialist to support the SCADA requirements of the Safe Water Drinking Act.