Mayor's Report - February 2007

Indian Arm Environmental Assessment & Water Conservation Plan

I am pleased to advise that in December the municipality submitted an application for water system infrastructure funding under the Canada–British Columbia Municipal Rural Infrastructure Fund that was announced on October 13th, 2006. The closing date for applications was January 31st, and decisions are expected by June 30th. (Update: We now expect decisions and announcements sometime in September.)
A note of cautious reality, however, is that there are about $1.6 billion in applications for $200 million in available funds!

Mayor Ralph Drew

Last year Council commissioned Dayton & Knight Consulting Engineers to undertake a Water Use Efficiency Study, the goal of which is to reduce the volume of potable water required through water conservation, thereby reducing infrastructure construction and operating costs of the water distribution system. One of the most important conservation tools is water metering, which involves measuring the flow of water throughout the distribution system. Typically, this involves placing meters at each service connection in the system, referred to as universal metering. The principal impact of universal water metering would be a reduction in potable water consumption and the following benefits:

  • A better understanding of water demand and unaccounted losses;
  • The ability to charge fairly for water on basis of consumption;
  • A better concept for system planning; and
  • Realistic projections for future water demand.
  • The Water Use Efficiency Study (12 MB) report was submitted at the end of January, and presented a number of priorities for the implementation of best practices with the following key recommendation:

    “Adoption of measures in a water conservation program must be done on a cost effective basis. The cost of implementing water conservation measures leading to a reduction in water demand should be less than the estimated savings to the Village. The principal savings will be a reduction in cost of water to the Village and ultimately the homeowner.”

    (Update: Project Engineer Walt Bayliss provided an overview powerpoint presentation on the Water Use Efficiency Study to Belcarra residents at a public information meeting on March 5th at the municipal Hall.)

    In November I reported that Council awarded a contract to Foreshore Technologies Inc. to undertake an environmental assessment of the preferred option (13.5 MB) alignment of the submarine water main crossing under Indian Arm between Strathcona Road in the District of North Vancouver (DNV) and Midden Road in the Village of Belcarra, according to the following scope of work:

  • Inventory of biophysical data within the near shore zone at the DNV connection generally adjacent the southern side of Grey Rock Island and terminating at the high-high water mark at the Strathcona Road right-of-way.
  • Inventory of biophysical data within the nearshore zone at the Belcarra connection generally adjacent the north side of the Belcarra public dock terminating at the Midden Road right-of-way.
  • Video and depth survey of the seabed for the preferred alignment between the Belcarra connection and the DNV connection which is approximately 1400 metres long and has a maximum depth of 39 metres.
  • Identification and characterization of the subtidal soil conditions along the preferred alignment.
  • Identification of physical and biological components along with photographic records and an estimate of percent aerial coverage and locations of dominant biological species within the alignment. The biophysical survey to be completed by a Registered Professional Biologist.
  • Recommendation of methods to be used for mitigating the environmental impacts related to the watermain construction, including alignment adjustments, methods for habitat creation, compensation and rehabilitation, taking into account proposed engineering and construction requirements.
  • Summarizing and reporting the biophysical survey and environmental assessment including electronic copies of the written, photographic and video record collected.
  • The Environmental Assessment Study (1.1 MB) report was also submitted in January, and provided the following summary conclusion:

    “The selected route for the pipeline crossing has inherent environmental merit in that it represents the shortest route thereby minimizing the footprint of the project. Materials identified in the pre-design are inert and will provide opportunities for habitat enhancement beyond their impacts. Based on the results of this survey, and the pre-design information provided, there are no environmental impacts associated with the Belcarra Watermain Crossing for which mitigation or compensation cannot be designed.”

    (Update: Project Biologist Kurt Fehr provided an overview powerpoint presentation (1.4 MB) on the Environmental Assessment Study to Belcarra residents at a public information meeting on March 5th at the municipal Hall.)

    Council will hold an information meeting at 7:30 pm on Monday, March 5th, at which the results for both the Environmental Assessment Study and the Water Use Efficiency Study will be presented and discussed by the professionals who prepared the reports. Council encourages you to mark your calendars and attend with your questions.

    Residents can also expect further updates on the project as additional information becomes available.


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    Village of Belcarra
    4084 Bedwell Bay Road
    Belcarra, BCCANADA
    V3H 4P8

    Tel: (604) 937-4100
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