Sunshine Coast Regional District
New outdoor water use restrictions in effect
Stage 1 of water use restrictions took effect on May 1 until further notice.
As part of the region’s water conservation goals to reduce 33 per cent of water consumption by 2020, this year the Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) has announced new outdoor water use restrictions for all municipal water customers of the Sunshine Coast.
“Water use more than doubles in the summer when seasonal rainfall is at its lowest,” said Dave Crosby, SCRD manager, utility services. “Restrictions help ensure that demand does not exceed the capacity of our water supply and distribution system and also ensures that there is always enough water for our fire protection on the Coast.”
Sprinklers, soaker hoses, irrigation systems and other watering devices can be used for outdoor watering according to the Stage 1 schedule below:
Hand-held hoses with shut-off devices can be used anytime for watering trees, shrubs, flowers or vegetables. For even addresses, outdoor watering is allowed on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. For odd addresses, outdoor water use is allowed on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. This change allows all homeowners to have a weekend watering time. This change will be most significant for Pender Harbour residents who will shift from watering times that were by even and odd calendar days. Now all Sunshine Coast residents watering times are according to even and odd street address.
Rain sensors are now required on all irrigation systems. This prevents irrigation systems from running when it’s raining. Drip irrigation systems, including micro-drip systems, are exempt from the watering restrictions because they are water-conserving systems. This exemption is particularly useful for the agricultural community.
Permits are available for watering beyond the allowable times in order to establish new lawns (seed or sod). Permits are only available during Stage 1 (normal) outdoor water use, for a period of 21 days. Permits are available at the SCRD Field Road office for $35.
During drought-prone summer months, the Regional District encourages residents to prioritize watering their vegetable gardens and perennials. “Homeowners and business owners can also choose to not water their lawns at all, letting the grass instead go dormant until the rains come back, and should consider replacing their lawns with drought-resistant plants that require less water,” Crosby said.
Water conservation education and enforcement staff are now patrolling. Avoid fines and protect your drinking water supply by following the sprinkling schedule above. For more information, contact the SCRD at 604-885-6806 or the Town of Gibsons at 604-886-2274. Visit www.scrd.ca/Sprinkling-Regulations for details on water use restrictions.
© Coast Reporter