In the past when we wired a home we could run a ground from the main water line and jumper over to the other side of the water meter and that could work as the system ground. The new Canadian Electrical Code in 2018 banned that method and you now have to install a ground plate with a number 6 bare ground for your service ground. I am just wondering if the NEC made this change also?
Don’t know about Canada, but in my neck of the woods a majority of the main water lines were PVC and newer ones are PEX. Not the best grounds.
It’s not banned. In fact, per NEC 2020, when 10 or more feet of water pipe in contact with soil is present it must be bonded and supplemented by another approved electrode.
The reason is water lines are no longer copper, PEX plastic pipe is not a ground.
The NEC requires the metallic water pipe to used as a grounding electrode when it qualifies as one as Simon stated. Also the NEC does not require a plate electrode although that is one type that may be used to form the grounding electrode system (GES). In new construction a CEE is the most common electrode when the water pipe is non-metallic.