Water Management

As of April 1, 2014, under the new NWT Devolution Agreement, the Government of the Northwest Territories is responsible for administering the laws that regulate onshore water in the Northwest Territories. More ...

These new responsibilities provide new opportunities for northerners to work with each other and with neighbouring jurisdictions to ensure water continues to meet our needs and sustains aquatic ecosystems.

Responsibilities for Water Management include:

Regulatory and Licensing

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) is responsible for developing, implementing and interpreting all legislation and policy relating to water use and management in the Northwest Territories. More …

Advisory

The ENR Water Resources division provides information and expert advice to resource management boards and other clients on the effects of proposed water and land activities on the aquatic environment, as required by the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act, the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and the Waters Act and regulations. More … 

Data Collection

Ongoing data about water is needed to properly manage water resources. ENR, in cooperation with Environment Canada and other federal and territorial departments, collects information about water quantity and quality in the NWT. More …

Stewardship

In 2008, the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) and Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) started working with representatives from Aboriginal governments to develop a water stewardship strategy. Regulatory boards, agencies, environmental organizations, industry, academic institutions and the general public have also been involved in the process. More …

Planning

Responsible water management requires a long-term view of the resource, its potential uses and future demands. Effective planning for water use and quality protection requires a comprehensive ecosystem approach. Because water straddles and moves between jurisdictions, strategic planning is based on watersheds rather than political jurisdictions. More …