A provincial bulletin issued Friday urges reduced water consumption on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. The region is experiencing level three drought conditions, which calls for voluntary water reductions of 20 per cent or more from municipal, agricultural and industrial users.
Bill Sims, manager of water resources, said the city will see how the province’s call applies to Nanaimo, but notes the municipality and Nanaimo Forest Products are providing water from dams to Nanaimo River and water levels are normal for this time of year. Water consumption is also down six per cent compared to last year and 10 per cent below average of the past five years.
River levels will continue to be monitored by the B.C. Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, which could upgrade drought advisory if weather continues to have a negative effect on stream flows. Level 4 conditions – the highest rating – can involve temporary suspension of short-term water permits or water licenses in affected watersheds.