Sewer Use Bylaw update

We’re updating the Sewer Use Bylaw (1996)-15202, which regulates what can and can’t go down Guelph’s drains.

Why are we updating the Sewer Use Bylaw?

The Sewer Use Bylaw was adopted in 1996 and last updated in 2006. Since then Guelph has grown, technology has advanced, and government regulations have changed. An update will ensure the City’s bylaw:

  • reflects and aligns with industry standards and best practices
  • complies with government regulations, both federal and provincial
  • is easy to understand for those who often refer to it (like local businesses)
  • protects the Speed River and our environment

While all Guelph community members benefit from a well-run sewer system, the bylaw update will particularly impact Guelph businesses and institutions. The City is considering making enhancements to the current Bylaw such as:

  • sewer discharge charges
  • overstrength agreements and permits
  • overall modernization
  • sanitary and storm discharges
  • performance and compliance improvements

We want to hear from you

An important part of the bylaw update is hearing from you. The City wants to know that the bylaw update addresses your concerns and we’re happy to answer your questions as we do the update.

You can have your say by:

  • visiting our second virtual open house to learn more about Guelph’s sewer system and what kind of changes we’re proposing in the bylaw update
  • ask us questions at from now until October 30, 2021
  • stay up to date on our progress by visiting or this project page

About the Sewer Use Bylaw

The Sewer Use Bylaw sets out the rules for what can and can’t go into Guelph’s wastewater sewers, that’s anything flushed or poured down drains, and storm sewers where snowmelt and rainwater go before flowing, untreated, into stormwater ponds and local rivers.

This includes rules for the disposal of sewage from systems that are not directly connected to Guelph’s sewer system, like septic tanks or sewage from recreational vehicles (motorhomes and trailers).

The bylaw also sets out how the City will oversee these rules and ensures businesses and residents are accountable for properly disposing of things like oils, fats and grease, and harmful pollutants like cleaning products and other chemicals.


Wastewater management in Guelph

Stormwater management in Guelph

For more information

Phil McIntyre, Supervisor, Environmental Compliance and Laboratory Services
Wastewater Services, Environmental Services
519-822-1260 extension 2953
[email protected]

Danielle Anders, Project Manager
GM BluePlan Engineering Limited
905-643-6688 extension 6210
[email protected]