Serving a population of about 376,000 with high quality water, wastewater and stormwater services, while managing $1.4 billion in assets, is complex at the best of times. And these are not the best of times.
Fortunately, Halifax Water’s 500 highly skilled and motivated people are dedicated to protecting public health and the environment, which is more critical than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Providing world-class services to customers and the environment is the mission of the utility. Staff are on the front lines keeping critical services and the local economy going around the clock, says Halifax Water General Manager Cathie O’Toole.
“The strength of Halifax Water is and always has been its dedicated, highly skilled and motivated employees. This has never been more evident or important than now as staff work the front lines during COVID-19.”
To understand what that actually means on the ground, Halifax Water – Canada’s first regulated water, wastewater and stormwater utility – maintains 1,500; 1,400; and 900 kilometers of water, wastewater, and storm lines, respectively. Along with these piped assets, the utility maintains 600 kilometres of ditches and 18,000 culverts. Last year Halifax Water produced 40.3 billion liters of drinking water at its eight supply plants and treated 76 billion liters of wastewater at its 14 treatment facilities.
The utility is internationally recognized for leadership. Making significant investments in water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure and services helps support the local economy, supports future growth, environmental compliance, and adaptation to climate change.
Halifax Water has continued to deliver current year business objectives despite the on-going pandemic. “For decades we have been focused on investing in critical infrastructure and improving our operations to manage the region’s water cycle in a financially and environmentally responsible manner,” O’Toole says. “So much of this has to do with our employees, who recognize the importance of the work they do and what it means our customers.” •