Access to Water

The Problem

Water is a basic human need and is fundamental to life. Today, we have a large population of Edmontonians that don’t have day-to-day access to drinking water. As a city, we have a duty to provide our people with the basics.

A lack of reliable, safe water causes dehydration, triggers stress, anxiety, and mental health problems, and prevents basic hygiene practices – the most basic defense against COVID-19.

Since the start of COVID-19, we’ve seen outdoor fountains shut off and a lack of access to public and private washroom facilities.

We are experiencing incredibly high temperatures, which has caused many of our social agencies to declare a water crisis. Throughout the summer we can expect this crisis to increase. Many have already put out the call to donate plastic water bottles to assist.

This is also not eco-friendly. We know only a small portion of single‐use plastic bottles are recycled and end up in the streets, parks, and waterways of our city, in addition to cluttering up landfill sites.

Without access to safe, clean drinking water, we are putting Edmontonians' lives at risk.

The Policy

Provide access to free, clean drinking water in city parks, recreation centres, and playgrounds.

  • Install 50 bottle refill fountains in public parks and playgrounds.
  • Invite and enable socially active business partners and social agencies to host drinking fountains on/in their properties.

The Outcome

An Edmonton that works for everyone - no matter a person’s beliefs, origins, circumstances, or what part of the city they live in - and includes Edmontonians that face the challenges of living in poverty or not having a home.

Every Edmontonian has equitable access to safe, clean drinking water. Water is the ideal beverage for healthy hydration and its consumption must be encouraged and enabled. Edmonton is doing its part in advancing sustainable solutions by reducing our consumption of single-use plastic bottles.