We understand Water is a living sacred entity that is the source of health and life.  As we take care of our Nations’ needs for clean water, we need to ensure our water rights, develop our unique water usage and water quality policies and programs, and utilize infrastructure choices that care for and heal the lands and ecologies we are responsible to care for. 

Our primary tools to prevent water contamination within our reservations are the establishment of water quality policies, monitoring, and plans within our Nations.   In the colonial US, we can apply for Treatment as a State status under the Clean Water Act (CWA). Using this mechanism, Tribes have been able to enforce higher water quality standards than states or cities, as well as expand the vision of caring for water to include the beings that live in and around the water.   Our legal protection mechanisms are imperfect to say the least, but through obtaining investment in creating water plans and authorities within our Nations and utilizing the CWA, we can begin to raise the standard of caring for water in not only our Nations, but our extended watersheds.  

‘Treatment as a State’ Application and Tribal Water Standards


Keepers of the Water

First Nations, Métis, Inuit, environmental groups, concerned citizens, and communities working together for the protection of water, air, land, and all living things within the Arctic Ocean Drainage Basin


Many of our Nations hold deep knowledge of how to care for, infiltrate, and collect rainwater to provide for our needs.  Rainwater can be used for potable (drinkable) water, or non-potable uses such as irrigation, livestock watering, and washing.  Collecting rainwater is an excellent, affordable, and simple way of conserving water.  Additionally, rainwater is often free of many of the pollutants that affect surface and underground water supplies.   Rainwater is typically soft, reducing the need for hardness treatment to preserve your plumbing.  Use of rainwater also eliminates the need for chemical treatment and extensive pumping, thus saving energy and use of toxics.

Rainwater Harvesting Resource


Green Infrastructure Guide


Rainwater System sizing assistance:  



DIY Culvert Cistern Installation


Natural wetlands are Mother Earth’s way of purifying and renewing the health of water.  Constructed wetlands, on large scales, and greywater systems, on residential scales, rely on the cultivation and restoration of diverse watershed ecologies to purify water, and are dramatically more affordable than standard systems.  They also create enhanced diversity, wildlife and wetland plant habitat.  

Arcata Marsh

City-scale constructed wetland for sewage treatment and ecological restoration


Tulalip Tribe Stormwater Wetland



Constructed Wetland system consultants and installers


Oasis Design

 Greywater, ecological design resource



Informational Resource for Greywater Systems


Earth Repair

Grassroots Bioremediation,  purifying water and soils


Cleaning Product Sources for Graywater Systems

These can be found in local natural food stores, but can also be ordered online. 

Oasis Soap



Citra-Solv Cleaner


Composting toilet systems turn human waste into fertilizer, and save precious water.  

Composting Toilet Resource

Composting Toilet Condensed Information


Build your own sawdust toilet


First Nations Infrastructure Institute

Development partner for water and other infrastructure


List of Province by Province funding opportunities


Indigenous Community Infrastructure Fund