ssr-hwy-41Water quality is largely determined by the water quality of the inflowing Bow and Oldman rivers. The resulting contributions of surface runoff during the spring and early summer increases total suspended solids and turbidity, along with other water quality issues associated with those particles.

During the base flow period, contribution by groundwater becomes more prevalent and can influence nitrogen, total dissolved solid levels and other parameters. Two major contributing factors to the region’s water quality are modifications in river flows by reservoir operations and other diversions, as well as agricultural and municipal return flows.

Click here, to view the Alberta Environment and Environment Canada Water Quality Monitoring sites in the South Saskatchewan River Sub-Basin (SSRSB).

For monitoring water quality in accordance with Schedule E of the Master Agreement on Apportionment that is overseen by the Prairie Provinces Water Board, Environment Canada uses a water quality monitoring site where Highway 41 crosses the river (see image on left). Since 2003, more than 95 per cent of water quality parameter measurements have met the required objectives (PPWB 2009). Currently, there are no objectives for phosphorus for this location in Schedule E.

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Read more.. about Water Quality guidelines used in Alberta.

Read more.. about Water Quality monitoring in the South Saskatchewan River Sub-Basin (SSRSB).