Low Water Response

Status: Level 2

Level 2 Low Water Condition Declared

Tuesday, July 26, 2016 (1:00 PM)

The Raisin Region Conservation Authority (RRCA) is confirming a level 2 low water condition for the local area. A water response team (WRT), created under the Ontario Low Water Response program met yesterday to discuss the situation. The WRT has representation from local municipalities, the provincial government, the Eastern Ontario Health Unit, and the region’s Source Water Protection committee.

Precipitation measurements from stations across the region are indicating that less than 60% of the normal amount of precipitation has fallen over the past 3 months. Additionally, flows in the Raisin River are only 25% of what would normally be expected during the summer months.

At this time, the WRT is encouraging water conservation and restrictions for non-essential use, with a target of 20% reduction in water.

Water levels in the St. Lawrence River through our area have not been adversely impacted. Water supply systems for the City of Cornwall, the Village of Glen Walter and Town of Lancaster are not directly affected by this drought.

The current condition may lead to some private wells showing signs of stress or drying up. The RRCA is collecting information on dry wells in the area for data analysis purposes. Residents with a dry well can assist by filling out an online form at www.rrca.on.ca/drought.
The RRCA will continue to monitor the watershed conditions and will provide updates as required.



About Low Water Response and the RRCA

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) manages water use during a drought. Ontario’s Low Water Response Program ensures provincial and local authorities are prepared in the event of low water conditions. The Raisin Region Conservation Authority assists the ministry by assessing local watershed conditions and notifying residents.

The Raisin Region Conservation Authority monitors precipitation and water levels throughout Cornwall; South Glengarry; and large portions of North Glengarry and South Stormont.

About Low Water Notices

Flows are in the normal range and precipitation accumulation has been close to average. 

Level 1
Flows are less than 70 percent of their normal summer low flow and/or precipitation has been less than 80 per cent of average. Water users are asked to voluntarily reduce consumption by 10 per cent.

Level 2
Flows are less than 50 percent of their normal summer low flow and/or precipitation has been less than 60 per cent of average. The Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change will send letters to holders of Permits to Take Water to ask them to voluntarily reduce their consumption by 20 per cent.

Level 3
Flows are less than 30 percent of their normal summer low flow and/or precipitation has been less than 40 per cent of average. There is also potential for economic harm to water takers and/or significant harm to the ecosystem. The Water Response Team may ask the province to impose mandatory restrictions on those holding Permits to Take Water.

In the event of a low water status of anything other than normal, the RRCA will issue a media release and advise our member municipalities. A local Water Response Team will be convened to inform the MNRF and the public.

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