The Grand River watershed is the largest inland river system in Southern Ontario. It has a total area of 6,800 square kilometers.
The Grand River is about 300 kilometres long, beginning near the village of Dundalk in Grey County. It empties into Lake Erie at Port Maitland in Haldimand County. The Grand has four major tributaries -- the Nith, Conestogo, Speed and Eramosa rivers.
About 70 per cent of the land of the watershed is actively farmed. About five per cent of the land is in cities, towns and villages.
The watershed has a population of about one million people. Most of them live in the five cities of Waterloo, Kitchener, Cambridge, Guelph and Brantford. Among the larger towns are Grand Valley, Fergus, Elora, Elmira, New Hamburg, Paris, Caledonia, and Dunnville.
There are 50 municipal water systems serving about 770,000 people. About 70 per cent of the water comes from wells, another 28 per cent from the Grand and Eramosa rivers, and about three per cent from the Great Lakes.
The Grand River Source Protection Plan is effective July 1, 2016.
The Grand River Conservation Authority is a community-based organization charged with restoring, developing and managing the natural resources of the Grand River watershed.