Water Conservation

Water conservation is becoming increasingly important in the City of Salmon Arm. Especially on hot summer days when we most want access to cool water whether it’s for watering the lawn, filling the pool, or for day-to-day indoor use. 

It is easy to believe that water is plentiful when Salmon Arm is located on the shores of Shuswap Lake. There is more than enough water in the lake, but the challenge is treating, pumping, and distributing the water to the community. There is a lot of water supply infrastructure between the lake and your home and while infrastructure is robust, it has its limitations. During hot summers, when water use is the highest, we can reach critically low levels of water storage in the system. This puts the community at risk, especially in the case of fire, where there might not be enough stored water available for firefighting. 

In these instances, if water consumption can be reduced, the system could continue to safely supply water to the City.

To better manage water demand and ensure sufficient supply, the City of Salmon Arm has implemented a multi-stage restriction strategy for outdoor water use.

What can we do to conserve water and keep the community safe?

There are many things you can do to help, and lots of them are pretty easy! For example, up to 50% of household water use in the summer is for watering the lawn and garden. There are lots of water savings to be had by altering your lawn and garden care practices!

"Lose the Lawn" - Rewilding Your Yard

The Shuswap Climate Action Society launched a project in the fall of 2023 called "Lose the Lawn: Rewilding Your Yard" and have made their webinar series and other information sources on xeriscaping available on their website. “Lose the Lawn” is aimed at helping homeowners create landscapes that integrate drought resistant native plants that attract pollinators and other wildlife making your yard both eco-friendly and climate resilient. We encourage you to check out their website and use the guidance to reduce the water consumption, maintenance and time needed to culture a beautiful yard.

See how many of these water conservation tips you can implement into your lifestyle!

Lawn and Garden 

  • Collect snow melt, rainwater and grey water for watering outdoor plants
  • Plant drought tolerant plants and xeriscape
  • Use a rain gauge to water only 1" per week
  • Instead of a lawn, grow clovers or wildflowers or other native plants
  • Let your grass grow longer, this way it needs less water
  • Water only during the cooler parts of the day
  • Add a rain sensor to automatic irrigation systems
  • Go golden! Do not water and let your lawn go dormant

Kitchen and Laundry

  • Only run the dishwasher or laundry when full 
  • Use fewer dishes and re-wear clothes 
  • Scrape extra food off plate instead of rinsing
  • When hand washing dishes, do not let the water run continuously
  • Keep a jug of water in the fridge for drinking, reducing the need to run the tap until it's cold for each glass of water
  • Wash fruits and veggies in a bowl instead of under running water
  • Reuse water from food preparation in your garden, where suitable (washing veggies, pasta water, etc.)
  • Upgrade to a low flow faucet


  • If it's yellow let it mellow (don't flush every time)
  • Turn off tap while brushing teeth or washing hands
  • Set a timer for your shower
  • Upgrade to a low flow toilet
  • Upgrade to low flow showerheads and faucets
  • Do not use your toilet as a waste basket


  • Cover your pool to reduce evaporation
  • Keep the pool clean to reduce the need to refill


  • Use community resources such as pool, lake, fields, parks and spray parks rather than having individual resources. That’s what these resources are there for.
  • Check for and repair leaks (toilets, sinks, piping, outdoor faucets)
  • Do not wash your driveway, sweep instead
  • Wash your car on the lawn so it also waters the grass, if possible
  • Install a greywater system
  • Use 'eco' or 'water efficient' settings on appliances


For more information please find our water conservation publications: