Good news, bad news on QC water

  • Sep. 22, 2003 2:00 p.m.

There was good news and bad news on the water system at the Queen Charlotte management committee meeting last Wednesday.
On the good side, Maintenance supervisor Victor La Boucane told members that two wells have improved production, thanks to a cleaning that removed scale and deposit. Water is now flowing more freely from well #12, Queen Charlotte’s main source. And Mr. La Boucane decided to try the same treatment on one of the town’s original wells, Well C, to see if it might start producing again. The procedure succeeded, and Well C is now producing 12-15 gallons/minute. He estimates it might produce as much as 20 gallons/minute during the winter. This adds at least 21,000 gallons/day to the available water supply.
But it’s not all so rosy. On the bad side, salt water levels in Well #12 have risen slightly to 49 mg/L, said Mr. La Boucane. This is within the Canada Drinking Water Guidelines he said, but it does show that the well is becoming increasingly stressed. Last year, Well #11, which draws water from the same groundwater source as Well #12, had to be closed because of salt.
Mr. La Boucane has been reviewing engineering reports about the town’s water supply, and he summarized their information during his report.
Queen Charlotte is unlikely to discover a sustainable source of groundwater, he said. All the engineering firms hired to find water agree, and all suggest developing surface waterinstead.
Queen Charlotte recently received $20,000 from the province, member Carol Kulesha told the committee. The money will pay for two studies to improve water supply and to develop a surface water for Queen Charlotte.
“Going to surface water will cost millions, but the town needs water,” said Ms Kulesha.