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Water & Wastewater

Updated: Mar 22, 2024

Water and wastewater management in Minto prioritizes sustainability and public health, ensuring reliable access to clean water while implementing efficient systems for responsible wastewater treatment and disposal.


The Water Division is responsible for the four water systems in Minto located in Clifford, Harriston, Minto Pines and Palmerston.  The four systems service over 2,300 customers with about 15.5% of these customers in Clifford, 36% in Harriston, 47% in Palmerston and 1.45% in Minto Pines.   There are 11 drilled wells, eight well houses, 225 plus fire hydrants, three water towers and several kilometres of watermain within the four systems. The Water Division must ensure all systems operate according to Ministry of Environment and Climate Change requirements and other applicable legislation including the Clean Water Act.  The entire water system is on electronic metres which read nearly 700,000 m3 of water consumption each year, down 25% since meters were installed in 2015.

  • Run the dishwasher only when full (saves 2 - 4.5 gallons per load)
  • Turn off water when rinsing dishes (saves 2.5 gallons per minute)
  • Turn off water when brushing teeth (saves 2 gallons per minute)
  • Shorten showers (saves 2.5 gallons per minute)
  • Fill the bathtub half full while bathing (saves 15-25 gallons per bath)
  • Don't use the toilet as a wastebasket (saves 1.6 gallons per flush)
  • Wash only full loads of clothes (saves 15-50 gallons per load)
  • Fix leaky toilets (Saves 30-50 gallons per day per toilet)
  • Fix leaky faucets (saves 15-20 gallons per day per leak)
  • Install aerators with flow restrictors on kitchen and bathroom faucets (saves 4.7 gallons per day)
  • Replace older, high volume flushing toilets (saves 2.3 -3.8 gallons per flush)


The Wastewater Division maintains three wastewater treatment facilities in Clifford, Harriston, and Palmerston.  The Harriston Lagoon Treatment Lagoon System is designed for about 2,400 cubic metres per day with reserve capacity of about 700 cubic metres per day.  The system serves about 2,010 people or 760 households.  The Clifford Lagoon System design capacity is 500 cubic metres per day with reserve capacity of about 170 cubic metres per day.  It serves about 760 people.  The Palmerston Waste Water Treatment Facility serves about 2,720 people with design capacity just over 2,010 cubic metres per day.  There is reserve capacity is near 585 cubic metres per day.  The Division also ensures several kilometres of wastewater mains, multiple lift stations, and hundreds of manholes within the system are maintained .

What Not to Flush

  • Many items we use on a daily basis Should Not go down our toilets or drains.  By flushing or pouring some of these materials down any of the drains in your home, you can cause: 
  • Damage or blockages of your home plumbing, which could lead to basement flooding
  • Damage to the Town’s sewer pipes located under the streets, which could lead to basement flooding
  • Damage to wastewater treatment plants
  • Harm to the environment and aquatic habitat in the Lake, local streams and rivers 

To help keep the entire sewage system working well, please do not flush or put any of the following products down the drain: 

  • Wipes/baby wipes – even those that say flushable can cause a problem. 
  • Tampons, sanitary pads 
  • Condoms 
  • Cotton swabs
  • Dental floss 
  • Facial tissue 
  • Paper towels 

Products, such as wipes (even some that may be labeled flushable) and rags should not be flushed down the toilet. These products can create blockages in your home plumbing and in the Town’s sewer pipes, which can cause damage and can be costly to repair.  The wipes that do make their way through the sewer pipes can damage equipment at wastewater treatment plants.  Whether it is the cost of cleaning and repairing a flooded basement, cleaning and repairing the Town’s sewer pipes or fixing equipment at a wastewater treatment plant – all of this leads to increased operation and maintenance costs for you and the Municipality. 

As a result of better measurement instruments and techniques, traces of pharmaceuticals are being detected in the environment.  One way they get there is by consumers disposing of medications (prescription and non-prescription such as pain relievers, cough syrups, antibiotics, veterinary drugs, etc.) in the garbage, flushing them down the toilet or pouring them down the sink. Unused pharmaceuticals products should be returned to the pharmacy or disposed of via household hazardous waste.

How do fat, oil and grease cause sewer blockages? 

When warm fats, oils, and grease are washed down the sink or toilet into the plumbing system they cool, harden and stick to the inside of sewer pipes (both in private sewer lines in your home and Town sewers under the streets). Over time, the grease will build up and can block the entire pipe.

Where do fat, oil, and grease come from? 

They often are a result of cooking, and can be found in meats, fats, lards, cooking oil, shortening, butter and margarine, food scraps, baking goods, sauces, salad dressings and dairy products. 

What is the result of fat, oil, and grease build-up in the sanitary sewer systems? 

You may think that once it’s gone down the drain, it simply washes away and is gone for good. But that’s not the case. Fat, oil and grease can build up in your pipes, causing blocked sewers which can lead to problems, such as:

  • Overflowing of raw sewage into your home, business, or neighbouring property, causing basement flooding – an expensive and unpleasant clean-up.
  • Contact with disease-causing organisms. 
  • A raw sewage overflow into parks, yards, streets, creeks, rivers and the lake.
  • An increase in operation and maintenance costs to clean and repair damaged sewer pipes.

What can you do to help prevent sewer system blockages? 

  • NEVER pour grease down sink drains or into toilets.
  • DO put basket/strainers into sink drains to catch food scraps and other solids. Empty the drain basket/strainer into the compost for disposal.  

What should you do with your fat, oil and grease? 

  • Let the grease cool and harden, then scrape it and food scraps from trays, plates, pots and pans, utensils, grills, and cooking surfaces into your compost, recycling or garbage. 
  • Small volumes of liquid cooking oil can be placed into the compost, recycling or garbage as long as the oil can be absorbed by the other organic materials or paper towels. 
  • Larger amounts should be collected into a sealed container labelled “cooking oil” and can be dropped off at Hazardous Household Waste (HHW) depots located at the Wellington County operated transfer stations and community environment days.  

Water and Sewer Billing

Tawnya Robertson Revenue Coordinator

519-338-2511 ext 233

Nicole Clelland Administrative Assistant

519-338-2511 ext 227

Payment by Credit Card Option

Municipal Drinking Water Licensing

Water and Sanitary Systems Servicing Strategy

Water Quality Reports

Drinking Water Quality is very important to the Town of Minto. To date the Ministry of Environment inspections of our water systems have given us exemplary results. Annual Drinking Water system reports are available below. Mandatory lead testing has been completed. The lab tests indicate a very low presence.

Ministry of Environment Annual Report on Drinking Water

Drinking Water Quality Management Standard Operational Plan - available at the Administration Office.




Minto Pines

To Review Previous Water Reports, Please Contact the Water Department

Get In Touch

Water On-Call Operator In Charge


Wastewater On-Call Operator In Charge


Todd Rogers Water Services Manager

519-338-2511 ext 223

Mark Robertson Wastewater Services Manager

Nicole Clelland Administrative Assistant

519-338-2511 ext 227

Jackie Hymers Public Works Clerk

519-338-2511 ext 250