Much to the delight of firefighters, fish, and friends of the environment, the recent rainfall has been a Godsend and with more on the way, local governments are eyeing an end to the strict water use regulations that have been in effect since late spring.
Watering restrictions will remain in effect until Oct. 31 but as of Sept. 18, they’ve been downgraded to Stage 2.
“Based on historical water consumption at this time of year, downgrading to Stage 2 watering restrictions should not increase water consumption above the demand we saw during the warmer weather when Stage 3 restrictions were in place, as residents are generally using much less water at this time of year,” said Dave Conway, director of Engineering and Operations for the Municipality of North Cowichan.
The change applies to residents not just in North Cowichan but everyone in the CVRD including the Town of Lake Cowichan, Cowichan Tribes, the City of Duncan and Ladysmith as well as those in the electoral areas.
A press release issued by all of the local governments said Vancouver Island’s provincial drought level has been downgraded and the low streamflow advisory has ended thanks to the recent rainfall.
Stage 2 restrictions allow owners or residents of even numbered civic addresses to water on Wednesdays and Saturdays between 6 and 8 a.m. or between 8 and 10 p.m.
Owners of odd numbered addresses can water at the same time on Thursdays and Sundays.
Folks can now wash their cars, boats, driveways and houses as well but garden irrigation permits are still not being issued during Stage 2 restrictions.
Hand watering of trees, shrubs, flowers, or vegetables is permitted on any day of the week between 6 and 8 a.m. or between 8 and 10 p.m. by use of a hose with a spring‐loaded nozzle or by bucket.
The new regulations also allow micro irrigation or drip irrigation systems to be utilized anytime to a maximum of four hours per day.
Commercial enterprises which require water to facilitate normal business activities such as power washing companies or window washing companies, are permitted unless ordered otherwise by the director of Public Works.
“The Cowichan Valley local governments would like to thank all residents and commercial businesses for their water conservation efforts these past few months,” said a notice. “It did make a difference!”
For further information on water conservation generally, please visit www.NewNormalCowichan.ca or your local government website for more comprehensive details.