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17th June 2016
EDITOR
Lantzville studies aquifer capacity

by Nicholas Pescod - Nanaimo News Bulletin

posted Jun 16, 2016 at 1:00 PM— updated Jun 16, 2016 at 2:14 PM

Lantzville is moving one step closer to understanding how much water they could gleam from a specific aquifer.

On Monday, Lantzville councillors approved a motion asking district staff to prepare a report on the capacity of the Harby Road aquifer, one of the places from which Lantzville draws municipal water.

The idea for a report was brought forward by Coun. John Coulson, who said the time is right to empirically validate how much water the aquifer holds, adding that it is important to understand what it could mean in terms of water supply to residents.

In 2015, district staff and council were given a report from Lowen Hydrogeology, where a theoretical capacity number on the aquifer was presented.

The new staff report would provide data about the aquifer, such as how the current capacity of it is monitored, what is considered a low-level condition for the aquifer, how the recharge capacity of the aquifer is monitored and what criteria will be monitored and evaluated to empirically determine the capacity of the aquifer.

“We are in a very favourable position right now with being able to do a good test on aquifer with very limited consequences,” Coulson said. “Conversely, if we hand out additional connections we could find ourselves in a situation where we gave out too many connections.”

Coun. Denise Haime supported the report, noting that it will show the public that the district has done its homework on what it has in terms of the aquifer’s capacity and whether connection standards can be lowered to allow more households to draw from the system.

“It actually helps to make it very clear what our parameters are and give us correct measurements so when the public asks these questions: have you done this test? Can you give us some definitive answers? Are we dropping the standards prematurely? Here are the answers,” Haime said.

Coun. Will Geselbracht also supported the report, saying some residents have waited a long time to know if they can get water.

“I am hoping that once we the information back with respects to this motion and ongoing tests that we will not only be able to lower those water standards but start passing out connections to residents, long suffering residents ... who have been waiting a long time to get connections,” he said.

The report is expected to come back to council by the end of the month.

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