A water budget is one of the main tools needed to effectively manage our water resources into the future. How much water do we get from rain and snow? How does it travel through the watershed? How much is stored underground and where? How much do we lose in evaporation and through plants? How much water is taken from our rivers, streams, lakes and groundwater reserves? What are the trends?

You can think of a water budget like a household budget. The amount coming in to start the process (your income) must equal the total of everything going out (your expenses) plus any change in storage (your savings).

By analyzing all this existing information, we can understand the "big picture" of our water supplies. More work was done to understand local important details such as how each municipal drinking water source gets replenished and how long it takes, seasonal shortages and normal in-stream ecological needs for water, how changing climate may affect our municipal water supplies, how much we need for future drinking needs and how much can be used for other purposes.

With this basic information in hand, your local Source Protection Committee  was better equipped to develop the Source Protection Plan for municipal water systems.

A conceptual water budget studies the amount of water coming in, and its movement through, the watershed. This work helps to understand the physical features of the watershed, how they affect the water budget, and estimates of the quantity of water entering, leaving, and being used in the region.

Conceptual Water Budget Maps

View our Conceptual Water Budget Maps

Tier 1 Water Budget

The tier 1 water budget refines the work completed at the conceptual water budget stage by focusing on a smaller area and time scale. The tier 1 water budget studies water at the subwatershed level and at a monthly time scale. This work identified areas where there may be higher water use, either seasonally or all year.

Tier 1 Water Budget Maps

Tier 2 Water Budget

The Tier 2 Water Budget work looks (in more detail) at those areas found to have a moderate or significant stress at the Tier 1 stage that also contain a municipal residential drinking water system. The Tier 2 Water Budget looks at specific subwatersheds, again on an average monthly value basis, but considers some drought conditions.

Two Tier 2 Water Budgets were completed in the Quinte Region:

Tier 2 Water Budget Maps 

All water budgets were peer reviewed. See those reports below.

Conceptual Peer Review Report
Tier 1 peer review record
Quinte Tier 2 Water Budget Peer Review Record