Governments exploring non-potable water source for Manitoba industrial park

The provincial and federal governments are teaming up to determine the feasibility of a non-potable water source in a Portage la Prairie-area industrial park.

On Wednesday, the governments announced they are committing $55,000 to study the possibility of a non-potable water source for tenants of an industrial park in the RM of Portage la Prairie. The water source would be used for non-food processing purposes at the Poplar Bluff Industrial Park.

“With increasing signs of climate change, every action the agriculture industry can take to use scarce inputs wisely matters,” said federal Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau, in a news release.

“Projects like this show great initiative on the part of Manitoba’s processing sector – improving sustainability through one small action can lead to further wins and opportunities down the road.”

Poplar Bluff Industrial Park, located west of the city of Portage la Prairie, includes Simplot Canada Ltd., Roquette Canada Ltd., Enns Brothers, Overton Environmental, and K&G Mushrooms.

The Portage la Prairie’s city water treatment plans currently provides water for these businesses, while the RM of Portage la Prairie’s non-potable distribution system provides the fire protection water supply.

The tenants of the industrial park said they are interested in using non-potable water sources for non-food processing purposes, and reusing water when possible.

“Emerging research and technology are revealing creative ways to conserve and recycle water,” said Dominique Baumann from Roquette Canada Ltd.

“This study will provide valuable direction for local industrial users as we work together toward a more sustainable approach for water usage.”

The report is expected to be finished in spring 2023, and will provide options and cost estimates on the infrastructure needed to use a non-potable water source. The provincial government and RM of Portage la Prairie will review the report and consider the next steps in collaboration with the industrial park businesses.

The government funding for the study is coming from the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.

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