Water Security Agency

The Qu’Appelle Nutrient Mass Balance Report

The Qu’Appelle Nutrient Mass Balance Report was completed because of the significant cultural, environmental and resource importance of the Qu’Appelle watershed to Saskatchewan.

The Qu’Appelle Nutrient Mass Balance Report examines the concentration and load (total amount over time) of nutrients entering, being retained and leaving the Qu’Appelle River and tributaries within the watershed.

Similar to other prairie ecosystems with naturally rich soils, the Qu’Appelle Watershed is a naturally nutrient-rich system. The report identifies some key load sources for nutrients and highlights some significant steps taken to reduce phosphorus and nitrogen loads entering Pasqua Lake. It also provides important scientific information on the formation of algal blooms to assist with managing their relative risk.

The Water Security Agency (WSA) will continue to gather and evaluate information to inform decisions regarding options to manage nutrient inputs in the Qu’Appelle Watershed. WSA’s work includes regulating sewage effluents, moving forward with the Agricultural Water Management Strategy, and continuing collaborative work with researchers, local watershed authorities and municipalities.

The study does not specifically evaluate agricultural contributions to overall non-point source (diffuse) nutrient loading to the Qu’Appelle River or its tributaries. Nor does the study consider the quality of water as it relates to a raw source water used to produce potable drinking water supplies. Drinking supplies are already regulated for safety by WSA in cooperation with municipalities through the watershed.

To read the report or the summary, please select it in the column on the right.