A water bailiff was hired for the summer of 2005 to help enforce Peachland’s watering restrictions, and to gain a better understanding of how water is used by both residents and growers. This will help the district make sound water management decisions now and in the future.
While many residents are satisfied with the town’s raw water, others are not and have installed water softeners. These devices may address hardness concerns, but unfortunately, the backwash discharged from the softeners into the sanitary sewer has significantly increased sodium levels in the reclaimed water. This water is used for irrigation at various locations. Elevated sodium levels damage the environment in general and our aquifer in particular, and can detrimentally affect the growth of turf and trees.
The City of Salmon Arm’s WaterWise program manager, Eugene Lalonde, can now say with certainty that “residents favour wise water use.” Findings from in-home water audits conducted during the summer of 2005 show conclusively that residents are becoming more aware of the need for water-use efficiency, and are more prepared to take the necessary steps to achieve it.
During the summer of 2005, the City of Penticton’s Water Smart Ambassadors surveyed residents to determine their watering habits. They were thrilled to find that 99 percent of those surveyed agreed that water conservation is important, and that the majority of residents have adopted the City’s new watering restrictions.
The five major water utilities serving the west side of Okanagan Lake near Kelowna are working together to ensure a sustainable, affordable, and high-quality water resource for future generations.
On July 20, 2005, the Village of Lumby launched its Water-use Efficiency Program. In keeping with the newly adopted Water Conservation and Drought Contingency Plan, a Stage-1 water conservation threshold was declared that introduced water sprinkling regulations, a public education program, and a more stringent water level monitoring program for village wells. This was well received by residents, and resulted in excellent voluntary compliance.
The City of Kelowna Water Utility takes conservation seriously, and 2005 will be remembered as the year the utility kicked its Water Smart program into high gear.
The term 'natural capital' refers to a region’s natural, environmental, and ecosystem resources, and land. It is capital because it contributes goods and services necessary for environmental and economic health. In addition to some of the more obvious benefits of environmental conservation such as habitat preservation, flood control, and ensuring water quality, there are significant financial benefits. Assigning a monetary value to our natural resources creates another motivation for environmental preservation and restoration.
A central location to find all pertinent information regarding protection and recovery of local species at risk will be found on the newly formed South Coast Conservation Program website: http://www.sccp.ca/