Manitoba Water Strategy

A dock winding over a body of water.

Working together to manage water sustainably

In April 2021, the Government of Manitoba provided EMILI with a grant to establish a Water Strategy Fund to enable stakeholder engagement, conduct research and analysis into best practices in other jurisdictions, and launch multiple strategic water projects to accelerate and inform the government’s creation of a new provincial water management strategy.

Strategic water projects

Manitoba’s last comprehensive water plan dates back to 2003. However, the intertwined dynamics of climate change, market opportunities and municipal population growth demand a new, holistic provincial water management strategy to protect Manitoba’s environment and bolster economic prosperity into the future. As an organization with connections to government, industry, academia and the non-profit organizations across Manitoba and the Prairies, EMILI was chosen based on its ability to tap into a broad range of perspectives around water usage, water-related issues and the potential application of intelligent technologies. To guide EMILI’s work, the Province and EMILI jointly appointed an oversight committee with representatives from government, business, industry and the Winnipeg-based International Institute for Sustainable Development.

From December 2021 to May 2022, EMILI facilitated three strategic water projects completed by leading global water engineering firm Stantec in conjunction with senior government staff:

  • Creation of a customized, predictive water supply/demand tool for Manitoba powered by artificial intelligence
  • Completion of a comprehensive study on opportunities for increased water conservation and efficiency in Manitoba
  • An analysis of the potential return on investment of increasing provincial irrigation capacity

Read about Manitoba's water strategy

What's next

EMILI submitted its recommendations report to Manitoba’s Minister of Environment, Climate and Parks in June 2022. This report helped inform Manitoba's Water Strategy, announced in November 2022 along with their commitment to develop a Water Action Plan during winter 2022/23.

The report consists of over 60 suggested short and long term action items to enhance and protect Manitoba’s water supply for the coming decades, as well as key findings and analysis of water issues in Manitoba, and detailed overviews of the outcomes of three strategic water projects commissioned by EMILI through the Water Strategy Fund.

If you have any questions or comments about this initiative, email