One of the City of Iqaluit’s suggestions for conserving water is to keep a pitcher of drinking water in the fridge, rather than waiting for the tap to run cold.

Iqaluit residents still can’t wash their cars or boats

“The city would like to remind residents to continue to be water wise”

By Nunatsiaq News

If you live in Iqaluit and you were hoping to hose down your car or boat after a long winter, you’ll have to hold off.

The City of Iqaluit is still working to conserve its freshwater supply and continues to maintain its ban on car washes.

This week, that ban was also extended to all motor vehicles—including boats—whether they are commercially or personally owned.

“The city would like to remind residents to continue to be water wise, and conserve our water supply,” the city said in a May 30 release.

Though reports commissioned by the city have pointed to looming water shortages, city officials were forced to react quickly last year when water levels hit a critical low.

Lake Geraldine, which supplies the city’s freshwater, relies on the summer months to fill before the winter freeze. Typically, the reservoir is full by October, but that didn’t happen in 2017.

An assessment prepared for the city last year showed declining levels of precipitation, coupled with the lowest water levels the city had seen in over a decade—factors suggesting a potential water shortage to come.

A task force struck to look into the issue recommended the city supplement its freshwater source with water from the Apex River, which it did ahead of the winter months.

Even then, city officials put in place a ban on washing cars; they also asked residents to opt for showers over baths and to keep pitchers of drinking water in the fridge, rather than letting the tap run until cold.

A Nunavut Water Board review is currently underway to look at the city’s latest proposal to pump more water from the Apex River from 2019 through 2026.

As for its current ban, the city said it will grant certain exemptions to emergency vehicles for health and safety reasons.

For more information, contact or call 867-979-5600.

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(9) Comments:

  1. Posted by I live in the Arctic on

    What about the brewery 🙁 ?

    • Posted by me too on

      What about the brewery? Are they washing cars or boats? No? Okay, well that answers your question. What about cafes or restaurants, or any other business then? They all use water.

  2. Posted by Iqalummiutaq on

    So what’s the penalty or fee for washing your car? So many vehicles in town have been washed. Seems like there’s no deterrence.

  3. Posted by Northern Guy on

    I am waiting for the next hard rain and washing my vehicle then, and there is nothing the City can do about it.

    • Posted by Consistency on

      quick collect snow and melt it… unless it is all gone in Iqaluit already

  4. Posted by Larry on

    There is tons of water going into the sea right now, why does the city not tap into the river for water?

  5. Posted by Paul Murphy on

    Quote “grant certain exemptions to emergency vehicles for health and safety reasons” Unquote
    So any other dirty vehicle doesn’t create a health concern???
    We are talking the outside of vehicles. How is that a health concern unless someone is rubbing their noses along the body? How is a dirty fire truck a health concern?

    • Posted by Andy on

      For ambulances, the fire marshal, By-Law, etc. I don’t believe it’s necessary. In any case of an emergency they have their lights and sirens to make sure they are noticed. As for the fire truck, maybe mud and dust covered hose connections, or other mechanical parts could be troublesome. Does this contribute to Health and Safety? It sure does if it takes 2 minutes longer to distinguish fires. Besides, isn’t a fire truck always red and shiny?

      However, a solution for the water issues has to be found. Milder winters with less snow and and population that is growing by the day, will eventually expose us to more severe situations than a ban of washing boats and cars. I guess it’s time to take my vehicle and some buckets to the Grinnell river

  6. Posted by washer person on

    what about using a regular sized floor bucket? is that allowed?

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