The longest period of Stage 4 water restrictions in the Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) came to an end at noon on Sept. 20, after being in effect for 41 days.
Between Friday morning, Sept. 17, and Monday, Sept. 20, a total of 126 millimetres of rain fell in the Chapman Lake area, a press release from the SCRD said. Enough rain fell for the SCRD to revert to Stage 1 restrictions until the end of the month.
Stage 1 water conservation regulations will allow water users on the Chapman, Langdale, Soames Point, Granthams Landing, and South Pender water systems to use water outside once again, although with some limitations. Sprinklers and soaker hoses can be used a few times a week during set times to water lawns, shrubs, flowers or food-producing plants, with the day and time depending on whether the address is an even or odd number. Hand-held hoses with shut off devices can be used at any time. Pressure washing sidewalks and driveways, windows and exterior building surfaces is allowed under Stage 1. Ice at the Sunshine Coast Arena in Sechelt will be installed and become available starting Oct. 12.
The full regulations can be found at www.scrd.ca/Sprinkling-Regulations.
“This has been by far the most challenging year for the SCRD in managing our water supply,” Remko Rosenboom, the general manager of infrastructure services, said in the press release. “Thank you to everyone in our community who stepped up and answered our call to conserve water, your efforts made a real difference. We are also grateful to our municipal partners, particularly the Town of Gibsons for assisting us with water supply through the late summer months.”
The Emergency Operations Centre responding to the drought will also be winding down, and conversations about the proposed siphons at Edwards Lake as a permanent emergency measure will continue. Work on other water sources at Langdale and Gray Creek continued through the summer.
“We remain hopeful that we will be in a position to bring the Church Road wells source online in 2022. We hope to be able to confirm a more detailed timeline for that later this year,” Rosenboom said. “However, this summer we saw record temperatures and dry weather across the province so I encourage residents and businesses to start planning for water supply for outdoor use for the summer of 2022. Even with the Church Road wells online it is possible that an extended drought next year will again require more stringent water conservation regulations to be activated to guarantee the water supply.”
Eastbourne water system will remain at Stage 4 until further notice.
The Town of Gibsons, which had loaned up to 1,000 cubic metres of water per day starting on Sept. 1, stopped delivering water to the SCRD and ended all water restrictions on Sept. 20.