There have been a lot of stories in the media lately about the water infrastructure problems municipalities need to try to solve. Broken water mains due to older pipes and the ensuing water that is waste are becoming commonplace. Older water supply systems and wastewater treatment plants need more funding to make sure they continue to provide crucial services to residents. The challenge is as cities expand, water demand expands, resulting in even more pressure on water related infrastructure.
In Toronto, city council is raising water rates by another five per cent this year after after nine straight years of nine per cent increases. The City of Waterloo is planning to raise the sewer and water rates by 60 per cent in the next 10 years and the City of Kitchener is expected to raise rates by 56 per cent in the next five years. In fact, residents of Kitchener recently received a notice their water and sewer rates are increasing by nine per cent, an average increase of $92 a year.
According to the 2015 BMA Municipal Study, the average home in Ontario paid $922 a year for 200 cubic metres of water. Depending on the municipality, annual average bills could reach as high as $1647. According to the Canadian Municipal Water Consortium, close to 90 per cent of Canadians have municipal water service, from major cities with over a million people to small communities with populations of only a few hundred. Each municipality typically manages its own system, resulting in several thousand independently operated systems across the country.
With their municipal utility bills on the rise, homeowners are faced with paying more for their water. Just to maintain their existing household budget, they need to find ways to cut back and be more efficient.
The Alert Labs Flowie water sensor provides real time data about water use, down to the minute, and provides alerts about abnormal water use, leaks and floods. Instead of receiving their monthly water bill and paying for unnecessary wasted water, homeowners can detect leaks and fix them immediately.
Water is one of those things in our daily lives that we take for granted. It’s always there and available when we need it. Almost 65 per cent of our bodies are made of it and we’re constantly losing water when we sweat, go to the bathroom and breathe. We can survive around two weeks without food but only three or four days without water.
The average Canadian family of four uses about 1000 L of water every day and the average American family around 1500 L.