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Image of Deacon Reservoir2008 Deacon Reservoir water quality test results

Deacon Reservoir is a storage reservoir just east of Winnipeg. There are four open cells at Deacon, which together hold 8.8 billion litres, enough water to supply Winnipeg for about 20 days. We rechlorinate the water with chlorine as it leaves Deacon Reservoir. We add sufficient chlorine to maintain a free chlorine residual of at least 0.3 milligrams per litre in the water before it is rechlorinated in the regional pumping stations. Before the water leaves Deacon Reservoir, we also add to the water precise amounts of fluoride (to prevent tooth decay) and orthophosphate (forms a protective coating inside water pipes as part of our lead control program).

Testing
We test the water from Shoal Lake, Deacon Reservoir and Winnipeg every week during warm weather and every two weeks during the winter. We track seasonal variations in water quality as the water passes through the aqueduct and Deacon Reservoir.

At Deacon Reservoir we test for:

  • routine water chemistry
  • taste and odour compounds
  • metals
  • disinfection by-products
  • bacteria and protozoa
  • toxins produced by algae

In addition to this routine testing, the Province subsidizes the cost of testing the water for further contaminants including:

  • metals
  • herbicides and pesticides
  • PCBs
What is being
measured
How it's
measured
Guideline
or regulation
Deacon Reservoir
average
Deacon Reservoir
range
Comments
Odour units Inoffensive 130 50 to 200 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Geosmin parts per trillion no guideline 8 <1 to 38 Common taste and odour compound
IPMP - 2-isopropyl-3-methoxypyrazine parts per trillion no guideline <2 <2 to <2 Common taste and odour compound
IBMP - 2-isobutyl-3-methoxypyrazine parts per trillion no guideline <2 <2 to <2 Common taste and odour compound
MIB - 2-methylisoborneol parts per trillion no guideline <10 <10 to 20 Common taste and odour compound
246 TCA - 2,4,6-trichloroanisole parts per trillion no guideline <2 <2 to <2 Common taste and odour compound
236 TCA - 2,3,6-trichloroanisole parts per trillion no guideline <2 <2 to <3 Common taste and odour compound
345 TCV - 3,4,5-trichloroveratrole parts per trillion no guideline <2 <2 to <2 Common taste and odour compound
MTBE - methyl tertiary-butyl ether parts per million no more than 0.015 <0.001 <0.001 to <0.001 Raw water - guideline does not apply
NDMA - N-nitrosodimethylamine parts per billion under review <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05 Guideline under review by Health Canada
Plankton (algae) count cells per millilitre no guideline 16,240 1,200 to 64,400 Algae contributes to odours and may cause filter clogging
Chlorophyll-a parts per billion no guideline 4 <1 to 12 Chlorophyll is found in algae 
Microcystin LR parts per billion no more than 1.5 <0.2 <0.1 to <0.2 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Cryptosporidium oocysts per 100 litres no guideline <1 <1 to <1 19 samples taken in 2008 - no positive results
Giardia cysts per 100 litres no guideline <1 <1 to <1 19 samples taken in 2008 - no positive results
Turbidity (clearness) Nephelometric turbidity units no more than 1 0.88 0.33 to 3.10 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Colour, True units no more than 15 5 <5 to 7 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Total Dissolved Solids parts per million no more than 500 101 85 to 125 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Conductivity microsiemens per centimetre no guideline 164 155 to 177 Another measure of dissolved solids
pH units between 6.5 and 8.5 8.06 7.68 to 8.74 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Temperature degrees Celsius no more than 15 11.4 1.5 to 24.5 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Total Alkalinity parts per million as calcium carbonate no guideline 72 67 to 78  -
Total Hardness parts per million as calcium carbonate

between 80 and 100

79 71 to 85 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Total Organic Carbon parts per million no guideline 9 7 to 15  -
Total Inorganic Carbon parts per million no guideline 18 16 to 20  -
Total Phosphorus parts per million no guideline <0.03 <0.03 to <0.03 Phosphorus can contribute to algae growth
Ammonia Dissolved parts per million no guideline 0.04 0.01 to 0.09  -
Nitrate Nitrogen parts per million no more than 10 0.03 <0.01 to 0.09 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Chloride parts per million no more than 250 4.7 4.0 to 5.8 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Sulphate parts per million no more than 500 3.1 2.6 to 3.6 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Chlorine (total) parts per million no more than 3 <0.05 <0.05 to 0.13 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Chlorine (free) parts per million no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to 0.05  -
Trihalomethanesa parts per billion no more than 100 45 20 to 80 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Bromodichloromethanea parts per billion no more than 16 4 1 to 8 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Haloacetic acids parts per billion no more than 80 52 33 to 71 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Aldehydes parts per billion no guideline 12 8 to 18  -
Carbofuran parts per billion no more than 90 <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2 Meets the guideline
Propoxur parts per billion no more than 0.7 <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2 Meets the guideline
Aldrin parts per billion no more than 0.7 <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01 Meets the guideline
Lindane (gamma-BHC) parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
alpha-Chlordane parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
gamma-Chlordane parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
p,p-DDT parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
Dieldrin parts per billion no more than 0.7 <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02 Meets the guideline
Heptachlor parts per billion no guideline <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02  -
Heptachlor Epoxide parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
Methoxychlor parts per billion no more than 900 <0.04 <0.04 to <0.04 Meets the guideline
alpha-BHC parts per billion no guideline <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02  -
beta-BHC parts per billion no guideline <0.03 <0.03 to <0.03  -
delta-BHC parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
Captan parts per billion no guideline <10 <10 to <10  -
p,p-DDD parts per billion no guideline <0.03 <0.03 to <0.03  -
p,p-DDE parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
Endosulfan I parts per billion no guideline <0.01 <0.01 to <0.01  -
Endrin parts per billion no guideline <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02  -
Mirex parts per billion no guideline <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02  -
Simazine parts per billion no more than 10 <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1 Meets the guideline
Alachlor parts per billion no guideline <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2  -
Atrazine parts per billion no more than 5 <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1 Meets the guideline
Bromacil parts per billion no guideline <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2  -
Metribuzin parts per billion no more than 80 <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2 Meets the guideline
Azinphosmethyl parts per billion no more than 20 <1 <1 to <1 Meets the guideline
Chlorpyrifos parts per billion no more than 90 <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02 Meets the guideline
Diazinon parts per billion no more than 20 <0.03 <0.03 to <0.03 Meets the guideline
Dimethoate parts per billion no more than 20 <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2 Meets the guideline
Malathion parts per billion no more than 190 <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2 Meets the guideline
Parathion parts per billion no more than 50 <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2 Meets the guideline
Terbufos parts per billion no more than 1 <0.5 <0.5 to <0.5 Meets the guideline
Methyl Parathion parts per billion no guideline <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2  -
2,4-D parts per billion no more than 100 <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05 Meets the guideline
2,4-DB parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
2,4-DP parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
2,4,5-T parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
2,4,5-TP parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
Bromoxynil parts per billion no more than 5 <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02 Meets the guideline
Dicamba parts per billion no more than 120 <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02 Meets the guideline
Dinoseb parts per billion no more than 10 <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05 Meets the guideline
MCPA parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
MCPB parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
MCPP parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
Trichlopyr parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
Deltamethrin parts per billion no guideline <0.04 <0.04 to <0.04  -
Diclofop-methyl parts per billion no more than 9 <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1 Meets the guideline
Eptam parts per billion no guideline <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2  -
Ethafluralin parts per billion no guideline <0.02 <0.02 to <0.02  -
Propachlor parts per billion no guideline <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2  -
Propanil parts per billion no guideline <0.2 <0.2 to <0.2  -
Triallate parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Trifluralin parts per billion no more than 45 <0.03 <0.03 to <0.03 Meets the guideline
Atrazine desethyl parts per billion no guideline <0.05 <0.05 to <0.05  -
Cyanazine parts per billion no more than 10 <0.5 <0.5 to <0.5 Meets the guideline
Chlorthalonil parts per billion no guideline <0.06 <0.06 to <0.06  -
Arochlor 1016 parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Arochlor 1221 parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Arochlor 1232 parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Arochlor 1242 parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Arochlor 1248 parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Arochlor 1254 parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Arochlor 1260 parts per billion no guideline <0.1 <0.1 to <0.1  -
Calcium parts per million no guideline 22.1 20.9 to 23.6 Contributes to hardness
Magnesium parts per million no guideline 5.96 5.51 to 6.43 Contributes to hardness
Sodium parts per million no more than 200 2.1 1.9 to 2.2 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Potassium parts per million no guideline 1.26 1.18 to 1.35  -
Iron parts per million no more than 0.3 0.04 0.02 to 0.07 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Copper parts per million no more than 1.0 0.004 <0.001 to 0.010 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Lead parts per million no more than 0.01 <0.001 <0.001 to <0.001 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Aluminum parts per million no more than 0.1 0.005 0.002 to 0.009 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Arsenic parts per million no more than 0.01 <0.001 <0.001 to <0.001 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Chromium parts per million no more than 0.05 <0.001 <0.001 to 0.004 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Nickel parts per million no guideline <0.001 <0.001 to 0.001  -
Cadmium parts per million no more than 0.005 <0.001 <0.001 to <0.001 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Manganese parts per million no more than 0.05 <0.01 <0.01 to 0.03 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Zinc parts per million no more than 5.0 0.012 <0.001 to 0.034 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Mercury parts per million no more than 0.001 0.0000009 <0.0000005 to 0.0000023 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Antimony parts per million no more than 0.006 0.0004 0.0004 to 0.0004 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Barium parts per million no more than 1 0.016 0.014 to 0.018 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Beryllium parts per million no guideline <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002  -
Bismuth parts per million no guideline <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002  -
Boron parts per million no more than 5 0.01 <0.01 to 0.02 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Cesium parts per million no guideline <0.0001 <0.0001 to <0.0001  -
Cobalt parts per million no guideline <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002  -
Lithium parts per million no guideline 0.0023 0.0019 to 0.0027  -
Molybdenum parts per million no guideline 0.0001 <0.0001 to 0.0002  -
Selenium parts per million no more than 0.01 <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Silicon parts per million no guideline 0.69 0.43 to 0.89  -
Silver parts per million no guideline <0.00005 <0.00005 to <0.00005  -
Strontium parts per million no guideline 0.04 0.03 to 0.04  -
Tellurium parts per million no guideline <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002  -
Thallium parts per million no guideline <0.00002 <0.00002 to <0.00002  -
Thorium parts per million no guideline <0.0001 <0.0001 to <0.0001  -
Tin parts per million no guideline <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002  -
Titanium parts per million no guideline <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002  -
Uranium parts per million no more than 0.02 <0.0001 <0.0001 to <0.0001 Raw water - guideline does not apply
Vanadium parts per million no guideline <0.0002 <0.0002 to <0.0002  -
Zirconium parts per million no more than 0.1 <0.002 <0.002 to <0.002 Raw water - guideline does not apply
a Trihalomethane guidelines from 'Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality' by Health Canada, March 2008.
  Guidelines from 'Guidelines for Canadian Water Quality Summary Table' by Health Canada, revised May 30, 2008.

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This page was last updated on May 8, 2017