Nanaimo residents are being asked to give a right hand twist to their water taps.
Vancouver Island is under drought conditions and the city is reporting residents are about 10 per cent thirstier for water than the same time last year due to hot, dry weather in early April, which brought on an early snow melt and started the spring and summer season water consumption about one month earlier this year.
The province moved the Island up to a Level 3, or very dry, drought ranking May 30, prompted by low flows in most streams and rivers on the Island and dry weather conditions that are expected to continue.
Stage 2 watering restrictions have been in place since May 1 in Nanaimo. June’s cooler, wetter weather has helped somewhat, but consumption is still strong and local rivers have not recovered significantly.
Bill Sims, city water resources manager, said residents are currently draining about about 36.4 million litres a day from the Jump Lake reservoir compared to about 33.3 million litres per day this time last year and the city is asking residents to voluntarily dial back water use.
“It’s just time for a reminder to not take to it for granted,” Sims said. “The Jump Lake reservoir is full, which is where we want to be. We’re not panicking by any means.”
Efforts to conserve now will help ensure Nanaimo’s water supply will remain healthy and also be able to support flows to the Nanaimo River throughout the summer.
To learn more about water conservation, please visit the City of Nanaimo website at http://bit.ly/1ZPk6dH.