Letters to the Editor

Conservation is best for savings

To the Editor,

Re: Saving water saves money, Opinion, Jan. 26.

You have hit the nail on the head.

A principal reason our taxes and utilities keep on rising is because we continue with a model of development that costs us a lot more than it would if we instead focused on efficiencies.

In 1986, the town of Qualicum Beach was similarly facing the need to increase their water supply.

With a very simple program, it was able to reduce the maximum per day consumption of 3.29 cubic metres per capita to a mere 1.36 cubic metres/day/capita in 2010.

The initial program paid for itself in less than a year. Maintenance, pumping, energy and treatment costs were reduced, delaying the need to connect to the RDN Arrowsmith Water System.

The community still hasn’t connected to this system, fully 25 years later.

We in Nanaimo could get soaked for about $130 million to grab more water, or we could instead pay less than $1 million to duplicate Qualicum Beach’s success story.

Encouraging various officials at city hall to consider this option has evidently fallen on deaf ears.

OK, so if spending $1 million seems too paltry to avoid another dam, let’s really splurge and outfit every home with a grey-water recycling system costing about $1,300/home – saving about 20 per cent of the city’s water. We’d still have $100 million left over. Plus savings on pumping, sewage, etc.

Anybody else out there who likes lower taxes through conservation?

Ian Gartshore

Nanaimo

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