Accessibility/Mobile Features
Skip Navigation
Skip to Content
Editorial News
Classified Sites

The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Winnipeg figures out cause of brown water, says pipes will be cleaned

WINNIPEG - The City of Winnipeg says a report has identified manganese as the cause of the brown water that has periodically poured from residents' taps in recent months.

And part of the solution will be to clean more than 2,500 kilometres of water pipes.

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority says the level of manganese in the city’s water supply is not harmful.

Diane Sacher, the city’s director of water and waste, says there is much less of it in a glass of city tap water than in other beverages.

She says a cup of apple juice has 10 times the level of manganese seen in Winnipeg water, while coffee or tea can have 20 times the level.

Nevertheless, the brown water is unappealing to residents and Mayor Sam Katz says the city will work on fixing the problem.

The report by a environmental and engineering consulting firm says some of the manganese in the water system comes from Shoal Lake but the main source is the water treatment plants, where it is used as a coagulant.

“We add it to water so that it helps clump algae and other organic material together so that it’s easier to remove," says Sacher.

The city says will find ways to reduce the amount of manganese used during the water treatment process, and then, beginning in May, it will begin cleaning the pipes.

It would usually take six years to do that but the city says the process can be finished in two years.

All that doesn't mean the brown water will entirely go away, especially during the summer. But the city says it hopes to bring occurrences of brown water back to 2008 levels.


  • Rate this Rate This Star Icon
  • This article has not yet been rated.
  • We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high. If you thought it was well written, do the same. If it doesn’t meet your standards, mark it accordingly.

    You can also register and/or login to the site and join the conversation by leaving a comment.

    Rate it yourself by rolling over the stars and clicking when you reach your desired rating. We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high.

Sort by: Newest to Oldest | Oldest to Newest | Most Popular 0 Commentscomment icon

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is register and/or login and you can join the conversation and give your feedback.

There are no comments at the moment. Be the first to post a comment below.

Post Your Commentcomment icon

  • You have characters left

The Brandon Sun does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. Comments are moderated before publication. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.


Make text: Larger | Smaller

Brandon Sun Business Directory
Submit a Random Act of Kindness
Why Not Minot?
Welcome to Winnipeg

Social Media