EDITORIAL: Don’t muddy the waters, keep them clean and safe

The Alberni Valley has been hit with a spate of contaminated water advisories

The Alberni Valley has been hit with a spate of contaminated water advisories in the past few weeks, from Canal Waterfront Park (Canal Beach) and Polly’s Point to Victoria Quay, Papermill Dam on both sides of the Somass River and now a boil water advisory at China Creek Marina and Campground.

While China Creek Campground can trace its water woes to the recent dry-spell-followed-by-heavy-rain weather, no one seems to know why enterococci and E. coli counts have skyrocketed (then went back to normal) at the other locations.

Clean water is serious business. A number of years ago, after repeated boil water advisories and questionable drinking water quality in Beaver Creek, Susan Roth and the late Diana Sparks advocated for better attention to that quality. Their hard work resulted in the provincial 4-3-2-1 drinking water policy to which all municipalities must now abide.

Others are lobbying for better protection of the city’s entire watershed, which the city does not own.

People have questioned whether the contamination is coming from the City of Port Alberni’s sewage lagoon or some other source; the city has done some testing of its storm drains as well as water in front of the outflow to the lagoon and have said everything has come back normal.

Others wonder whether infrastructure to the sewage lagoon is perhaps beginning to fail and contaminating the water from below.

The quality of our water sources should not be left on the shoulders of a few concerned citizens who won’t take no for an answer. These persistent contaminated water advisories should be an alarm bell, not just for citizens but for politicians too.

We should all be concerned about why these contaminated water notices are occurring now. It’s time to be proactive about our water health.

Just Posted

Stranded hikers rescued by helicopter from North Island mountainside

Campbell River Search and Rescue used hoist operation to safely rescue trio near Woss

Oak Bay father charged with double murder takes the stand

Andrew Berry pleaded not guilty to the December 2017 deaths of his two daughters

Coroner’s inquest into fatal police shooting in Port Hardy begins in Campbell River

James Reginald Butters, 24, killed in 2015 after RCMP responded to call of male uttering threats

Duncan woman thought she’d die trapped in hot backyard shed

Jessica McCauley kept her cool and escaped after her toddler locked her in

Greater Victoria’s McKenzie interchange: a boondoggle in the making?

Project two years behind schedule, $11 million over budget, under fire for feeding greenhouse gases

VIDEO: Title of 25th Bond movie is ‘No Time to Die’

The film is set to be released in April 2020

Island manslaughter suspect found not guilty in Supreme Court

Court accepts accused’s argument of self-defence for 2017 incident in Courtenay

Retired Richmond fisherman wins record-breaking $60M Lotto Max jackpot

Joseph Katalinic won the biggest Lotto Max prize ever awarded

Victoria man charged with abducting autistic four-year-old daughter to Indonesia

Brent Erskine appeared in court in Victoria on Tuesday

Rosemount cooked diced chicken linked to listeria cases in B.C.

The symptoms of listeria include vomiting, nausea, fever, muscle aches

Vancouver Island poet writes over Shakespeare

Sonnet L’Abbé explores colonial thought by superimposing her own poems over the sonnets of the Bard

B.C. seniors allowed more choice to stay in assisted living

Province doesn’t need to wait for a complaint to investigate care, Adrian Dix says

Week-long Victoria Royals training camp starts Thursday

Rookie camp team names harken to older hockey clubs in the region

Liberals block hearings into scathing ethics report on SNC-Lavalin affair

Dion concluded in his report last week that Trudeau broke the Conflict of Interest Act

Most Read