Investigating Standards for Small Water and Wastewater Systems in Northern Canada


  • Paul Steenhof CSA Group
  • Michel Duteau Duteau Bioresource Contracting



Water Standards, Small Water and Wastewater Systems, Canadian North, Water Quality, northern infrastructure


Research investigating the potential of standards for the build, operation, and maintenance phases of small water and wastewater systems in the Canadian North was conducted to identify opportunities for standards to help ensure safe, accessible, and high-quality drinking water and sanitation for all northerners. This involved a review of literature, a survey of northern water system users and practitioners, and key informant interviews. The study highlights a general trend of low adaptation to local conditions for standardization documents on many technical topics in northern Canada. A number of major themes and corresponding recommendations are subsequently drawn with respect to potential for standardization efforts. Of these, training and certification/classification were identified as a key area that has many gaps, challenges, and potential opportunities with respect to the use of standardized procedures for small-scale water and wastewater systems. Subsequently, this is also identified as the area where standardization efforts may have the broadest social benefit, urgency, as well as potential feasibility.

Author Biographies

Paul Steenhof, CSA Group

Project Manager, Natural Resources, CSA Group

Michel Duteau, Duteau Bioresource Contracting

Water Sciences Specialist





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