City staff asking Nelson residents to be water smart
The hot weather of July 2013 has erased what was a complete disaster during July 2012.
However, as the temperature continues to rise the city reservoir levels begin to slowly fall.
“It’s not an emergency situation, yet,” said City of Nelson Utilities Supervisor Gil Bogaard in a statement, “but with the extended spells of hot weather we’ve been getting, and the remainder of the snowpack quickly shrinking, our creeks will start dropping too — and those are our main sources of drinking water.”
Bogaard is joining forces with the rest of City staff to ask local home and business owners to ease up on their water usage by following a number of conservation measures.
He said this is the time of year when water usage increases by as much as 50 percent, putting more strain on the city’s main and secondary reservoirs, primarily because of lawn and garden watering, and car washing.
“So we’re asking people to restrict water usage to a bare minimum, and to use whatever water they need at appropriate times.”
Bogaard said Nelson was in a similar situation in the summer of 2010, and when residents were asked to help save water, they responded “very, very quickly.”
He’s hoping Nelsonites do the same this time around too.
“Nelson residents understand the importance of our water, and of conserving it,” Bogaard explained.
“That’s a good thing. We need to keep our supply as high was we can for possible fire fighting purposes and to maintain our backup drinking water supply.”
The main water source is Five Mile Creek, which is being heavily relied on as of late.
City staff will be tapping into its two secondary water sources over the next few weeks — Anderson Creek will be on line by week’s and if need be, Selous Creek will be drawn from towards the end of next week.
In the meantime, the city is relying on alternative sources including Kootenay Lake’s West Arm, for water supplies needed for Nelson green spaces like the Lakeside Park sports fields.
A few tips to help conserve water in Nelson include:
• Water every other day only. Premises with “even” numbered civic addresses may sprinkle on “even” numbered days (ie: 2nd, 4th, 6th etc) and premises with “odd” numbered civic addresses may sprinkle on “odd” numbered days (ie: 1st, 3rd, 5th etc).
• Water in the early morning, before 10 a.m, or early evening, after 6 p.m, otherwise, water simply evaporates before it gets to the roots of plants and grass.
• Ensure that water does not over-spray onto sidewalks, driveways, fences or roads.
• Let your lawn “brown”
• Check underground sprinkler systems for leaks and re-set your timer to give the lawn only one hour’s worth of water each week, because that’s all it needs