Caution | Outdoor water restrictions in effect

Stage 3 outdoor water restrictions are in effect. Learn more about how City services are impacted and what you can do during this stage.

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Together, we can make every drop count

Updated June 19, 2024

Based on significant regional precipitation and cool temperatures this spring, Calgary’s water supply conditions remain Normal; however, Calgary is experiencing a water shortage due to a critical main break, so Stage 3 outdoor water restrictions are in effect. 

We’re continuing to monitor water supply conditions throughout the summer, and remind Calgarians to make every drop count.

What we’re seeing

  • Typical mountain snowpack melt for this time of year.
  • The Bow River Basin has received significant precipitation since March.
  • Bow watershed reservoir storage upstream of Calgary is below normal, and Glenmore Reservoir storage is above normal for this time of year.
  • Bow and Elbow River flows upstream of Calgary are normal for this time of year.

We will keep Calgarians informed as conditions evolve. Our next update will be in mid-July.

Current drought conditions

How you can help conserve water at home

In your yard

Prepare your yard for dry conditions and make it as water efficient as possible. 

Water wisely

- Avoid watering if there is rain in the forecast

- Water in the early morning and evening

- Start limiting outdoor watering to 4 hours a week.

Choose water-wise plants

Consider removing lawn where you can, and replacing with drought-tolerant, native plants that are suited for Calgary's climate and soil conditions.

Install a rain barrel

Capture and reuse any rainwater Mother Nature provides this season.

Add mulch to your garden

Mulch will reduce the amount of water that evaporates from your soil, reducing your need to water your plants.

Mow less often

Keep your grass 5-7 cm (2-3") high to shade the soil and leave your clippings on the lawn to retain moisture.

Point your downspout toward your garden

If you don’t have a rain barrel, point your downspout away from your home’s foundation and toward your garden or lawn to make the best use of the rainwater.

Add good quality soil

Add a base of at least 20 cm (8”) of good quality soil for a healthy garden that retains water.

Prioritize watering trees

Prioritize watering your trees and shrubs over grass. Trees provide many benefits to Calgary’s urban environment and maintaining a healthy tree canopy during drought is important.

Check your irrigation system for leaks

Irrigation systems are one of the most common household leaks. Schedule annual maintenance with an irrigation professional and check often for leaks.

Around the house

Every time you use water inside the home there’s an opportunity to conserve water.

Turn off water when brushing teeth, shaving

By turning off the water when brushing your teeth you can save up to 32 litres per person per day!

Run full loads of clothes and dishes

Using your laundry machine/dishwasher when it's half full uses twice the amount water.

Take shorter showers

Each five minutes you reduce can save 100 litres of water.

Fill bathtub halfway or less

Filling the tub only halfway (or less) when bathing children can save 40 litres or more every bath.

Fill a pot to wash vegetables

Place vegetables and fruit in a partially filled sink or pot to rinse them. Use the collected water to water house plants.

Scrape your plate

Scrape your plate into the compost bin. Do not rinse the food off dishes.

Fix leaky taps and toilets

The average home could save up to 10 per cent on water use by fixing water leaks.

Install low flow faucets and showerheads

Look for the WaterSense label when upgrading toilets, faucets and showerheads.

Invest high efficiency appliances

When it’s time, replace your old dishwasher or washing machine with a model that uses less water.

Find other ways to save water in your home

Other quick and inexpensive ways to reduce water use in your home.

At-a-glance guide to save water in your home

More information