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The More Victoria Changes, the More It Stays the Same...

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#621 Victoria Watcher

Victoria Watcher

    Old White Man On A Canadian Island

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Posted 28 November 2022 - 08:47 PM

September climate change hasn’t shown up since 1944.

#622 aastra

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Posted 28 November 2022 - 08:51 PM

Methinks the struggle to ensure an adequate water supply is yet another one of those odd issues that persists regardless of what you do (or do not do) in order to address it. Tremendous progress is constantly being made, or so we're told. And yet the problem is always there and always gradually getting worse, or so we're told.



Daily Colonist
May 28, 1947

Water Restrictions Start in Oak Bay, Saanich; City Likely

Set Days for Lawns and Gardens

Water Consumption at 1946 Peak

Watering restrictions go into effect in Oak Bay today...

Restrictions on use of domestic water in Saanich will be put into force immediately...

The decision followed reports from residents in numerous parts of the district that at certain times during the past few days no water whatever had been available for domestic use.

Meanwhile, in Victoria, water consumption soared yesterday to equal the period for last Summer. Water officials last night were considering whether to impose restrictions on service.

If the present hot dry spell continues some restrictions on water use is deemed a certainty.

"The serious lack of water in the higher sections of Oak Bay proves the urgent necessity of implementing the Stewart recommendations," said Mr. Musgrave, Oak Bay engineer. "These recommendations pointed out the necessity to construct a new flow line from the reservoirs into the city to supply Greater Victoria adequately."

Speaking of the restrictions now in effect, Mr. Musgrave pointed out that they have been ordered this year a fortnight earlier than usual. "Our first concern, of course, must be for a sufficient supply of water for drinking purposes, even if lawns and gardens have to suffer. We hope that this year will be the last in which water restrictions will have to be ordered."

Victoria can supply all the water Oak Bay can take, but the municipality has to pump it through its own system, G.M. Irwin, city water commissioner said yesterday.


#623 aastra

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Posted 28 November 2022 - 09:12 PM

Last article about the water supply issue. Some scary prognostications in this one:



Daily Colonist
September 2, 1978

Leach River Diversion

Licensing conflict: More water or fish?

A scheme to divert the Leach River into Sooke Lake is being held up because federal fisheries officials want the water in the Sooke River for fish, according to Ron Upward, commissioner for the Greater Victoria Water District.

"Somewhere around the 1990s somebody is going to have to make a big decision -- do they want water or do they want food," he said.

At present the plan is to divert the Leach and so increase the runoff into Sooke Lake. The water board would want only 20 per cent of the annual 5 billion gallons that is in the Leach every year.

However, fisheries officials want the licence to stipulate that the board remain limited to the 20 per cent for all time.

The water commission applied for the water rights licence a year ago, but it has still not come through because of the dispute over the wording on the licence.

"THE CRISIS will come in the mid 1990s," said Upward. "By then the city will have grown enough that the full capacity of the Sooke reservoir will be needed, and someone -- thank goodness it won't be me -- will have to decide which way to go. They'll either have to limit city growth, or provide water."

"By then, who knows, food may well be more important than water and the decision will be to provide for fish first and people second."

(aastra says: Most of us probably have no idea how close we came to either starving or dying of thirst, or maybe both.)

But, Upward said, he is not prepared to make any committment on the subject at present. He wants an open licence with final decisions to be made later in light of conditions at that time.

"By 1995 we will know better what the priorities are," he said.

(aastra says: It's almost 2023 now but the priorities across the board are clear as mud.)

ACCORDING TO Upward, there is storage in Sooke Lake for up to 4.5 billion gallons of water. But the flow from the Sooke River in a dry year is not sufficient to fill the lake if it has been drawn down to a very low level.

The Leach is the major tributary to Sooke River, with a flow of 12 billion to 15 billion gallons a year, against Sooke River's 7.5 billion gallons.

"We would want only about 5 billion gallons a year from the Leach and leave the rest for the fish," Upward said.

Concrete and tunnel work for the diversion would cost about $500,000 and the money is sitting in the bank. "We don't like having money in the bank like that," he said. "It is earning about 7.5 per cent interest, while the rate of inflation is around 12 per cent..."

HE POINTED OUT that the district will be picking up 20,000 to 25,000 new customers next year when the Saanich Peninsula water line is completed, and with the recently announced aid to reduce water rates there, farmers will be able to afford to use water for irrigation, so it is difficult to estimate how much water will be needed.

Upward said provision has still been made for raising Sooke Lake Dam another 25 feet if necessary.

THE WATER DISTRICT is at present negotiating for rights on the Canadian National Railways right-of-way which is being abandoned. When the dam has to be raised the right-of-way will be on the level that will be flooded. All of the roads around the lake will also have to be moved.

...the district is carrying on with logging of the area and with acquiring rights and moving roads so that there will be no problems when the additional reservoir capacity is needed, probably sometime in the 1990s.


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