Low Water Response

Status: Level 2

Level 2 Low Water Condition Continues

Monday, August 8, 2016 (1:00 PM)

The Raisin Region Conservation Authority (RRCA) is advising that the Level 2 Low Water Condition continues for the local area.

The 3-month precipitation indicator, which compares the actual amount of rain received over the last 3 months with the historic average for the same period indicates we have received between 43 and 63% of the normally expected rain at the Cornwall, St-Anicet and Loch Garry rain gauges.  In addition, the weekly precipitation trends include several consecutive weeks with minimal accumulated rain. The average daily stream flow in the Raisin River was 0.15 cubic meters per second which is only 21% of the average low summer flow of 0.68 cubic meters per second. 

The northern portions of the watershed appear to be more affected by the drought. Water levels in Loch Garry and Middle Lake in North Glengarry have been declining steadily over the summer and are approaching record lows.

The RRCA is encouraging water conservation and restrictions for non-essential use, with a target of 20% reduction.

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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