Catalyst Crofton apologizes for “lapses” in communication with Town of Lake Cowichan

Hopefully, discussion will “establish collaborative effort going forward”: Catalyst’s Brian Houle

Ed Bonenfant took this shot in 2017 of the testing of pumps, to get water over the weir at Lake Cowichan. (submitted)

Ed Bonenfant took this shot in 2017 of the testing of pumps, to get water over the weir at Lake Cowichan. (submitted)

After the amount of heat and light generated at town council meetings on July 9 and July 16, Catalyst Crofton has replied to comments about what they are doing at the Lake Cowichan weir right now.

Brian Houle, Environment Manager, Catalyst Crofton, said Friday, July 19, “Paper Excellence is fully committed to the protection of Lake Cowichan, the Cowichan River, and the Town of Lake Cowichan’s potable water supply and their water system if, due to the drought, we are forced to have to implement pumping of lake water over the weir.”

The major problem has been that the work began without a word officially to the Town of Lake Cowichan or council, leaving them out of the loop.

“We are sorry that there have been lapses in our communications with the town regarding plans over changes to the potable water system. We are using an independent, expert professional engineering firm based in Parksville to design those changes and became aware in the past few weeks that the original plans, developed in 2016, needed some modifications. We dropped the ball in not talking to the town’s staff and administration in an prompt manner; a scenario we have learned from and are taking steps to rectify,” Houle said.

“We look forward to having a fulsome discussion at the July 23 council meeting to establish a collaborative effort going forward with the Town of Lake Cowichan regarding the required temporary modifications and operations of their water systems to guarantee water surety through the pumping operation of the lake over the weir.”