Tag Archives: Manotick

Canadian water/wastewater sectors need climate change planning

“No Time to Lose – Canadian water and wastewater sectors must
adapt to climate change” by Hiran Sandanayake appeared in watercanada’s July / Aug 2014 issue

CWWAA few years ago, Canadian Water and Wastewater Association (CWWA ) staff asked its members a simple question: “How prepared are the Canadian water and wastewater sectors for climate change and extreme events?”

The following creative Youtube video, “Water and climate change : let’s adapt!”, published on Jul 30, 2014, mentions many vital concerns:

On the World Environment Day 2014, the Rhone Mediterranean Corsica water agency launched an animated film on adaptation to climate change in the water sector.  Climate change is here. Let’s adapt! The French Government, the Rhone Mediterranean Corsica water agency, the regions of Franche-Comté, Burgundy, Rhône-Alpes, Languedoc-Roussillon and Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur have engaged in a plan to adapt to change climate. Making the ground permeable again to allow water to infiltrate, reducing water waste, preserving wetlands and biodiversity… the plan proposes a range of measures to reduce the vulnerability of territories.

 After discussions, meetings, and a poll, the CWWA developed a quick snapshot. There was some good news: some municipalities saw climate change as a risk worth addressing. Some of them were establishing climate-change policies and strategies, quantifying climate-change risk, and developing adaptation programs for climate change and extreme events.

Unfortunately, there were warning signs, too. There appeared to be a wide range in levels of preparedness across the country. As the national voice for the water and wastewater sector, CWWA felt it urgent to advocate for climate-change adaptation and provide guidance.
CWWA created a new national technical committee for climate change. Since then, it has been bringing early adaptation adopters and champions together to spark a dialogue, learn from each other’s experiences, and learn about data and technical tools available for water and wastewater managers and utilities.

Another short video published Oct. 14, 2013 dealing with this topic is,”Preparing Great Lakes Cities for Climate Change: Adapting to Change and Building Resilience”, emphasizing collaboration between Canada and the USA regarding these concerns.

For communities in the Great Lakes region climate change poses unique challenges and creates intriguing opportunities. While many regions of the country face catastrophic threats of sea level rise or tragic outbreaks of wildfires, climate change impacts in the Great Lakes region create more subtle and insidious stresses on the way we live, work and play in our communities. At the University of Michigan’s Graham Sustainability Institute, we are working to address these impacts and develop strategies for building more resilient cities.

Through my role as chair of the climate-change committee, I have had the privilege of learning from and working with a broad range of professionals from water and wastewater utilities, the private sector, government departments, and academia. During this time, some themes have become apparent to me:
• Adaptation to climate change often requires multi-disciplinary approaches.
• Climate-change planning is founded on many existing municipal planning processes.
• Incremental approaches to climate-change adaptation may not be sufficient.
• Local climate-change risk assessments and proper data are critical to making informed decisions. Without these, proposed solutions may result in monies not being spent on the true priorities or, worse,
may result in maladaption (unintentional exacerbation of vulnerabilities).
• Applying a true climate-change lens to water and wastewater planning may result in different solutions; place new emphasis on non-traditional or non-infrastructure intensive approaches to water management and protection during extreme events; force us to re-examine traditional approaches to uncertainty, risk, vulnerability, and level of service; and require changes now to increase resiliency.
Lessons from extreme events can be instructive for climate-change planning. These events sometimes highlight linkages not readily apparent during normal operations (for example, the limitations of municipal human resources, municipal cash flow/financing, public preparedness, et cetera). In some cases, the lack of mandates and efforts coordinated between jurisdictions can also further complicate adaptation efforts.
Funding for climate-change adaptation is needed, not only by the municipal utilities but also by the regional, provincial, and federal departments that are providing research, technical guidance, and coordination.

Though we have already seen successes in climate change adaptation and collaboration, we are still in the early days of this process. For our part, the CWWA climate-change committee will be Image result for CWWA climate-changepolling municipalities to get an updated survey of the state of climate-change adaptation. We are also creating an electronic resource databank and have other technical and coordination initiatives in the early planning stages.

The time is now to begin the adaptation process. Quantifying local risks and increasing resiliency now is the best and most cost-effective strategy.

HIRANHiran Sandanayake, P.Eng., is a senior water resources engineer with the City of Ottawa and chair of the CWWA ’s climate-change committee.

Interesting related article ~ 
http://www.horizons.gc.ca/eng/book/export/html/1888

Canadian humour ~ You’ll Love Our Winters! Ha! ha! Part II

BOSTON SNOW2The following is the youtube video, “Boston Blizzard 2015 #Snowlapse ” that I included in the first part of this blog.  

WATER DROPLET1_FOR BLOG ICON

This winter, which is one for the records, many of our American friends to the south are also experiencing record breaking temperatures and snowfalls.  Hang in their folks ~ they tell us that there really is a spring season at the end of this long white tunnel!

LAUGHING2GIMPCROPPED

Here in Ottawa the snow keeps coming (although thank goodness we’re faring much better than our fellow Canadians down east) and the frigid temperatures are still with us. Time again to snuggle up with your blankie and a warm cup of cocoa to enjoy the rest of these cartoon jokes…

JOKE13  JOKE14 JOKE15 JOKE16 JOKE17 JOKE18 JOKE19 JOKE20 JOKE21 JOKE22 JOKE23 JOKE24

Whoops! Still looks like I lied about spring
being at the end of the white tunnel!

WATER DROPLET HAPPY ICON GIMPCROPPEDHave a great weekend and try to get out to enjoy a winter activity or two with family and friends… 

Hope you’ll visit with us again next week.

Canada in need of a national water policy?

1-BLOG WATER ACT

The following article, “Should Canada have a National Water Policy, by Stephen Braun, appeared in the July/Aug 2014 issue of watercanada.

Despite the best efforts of many people who care so much about our national water resources, Canada has no national water policy or strategy. 

hydrologic_cycle

Canada’s creeks, rivers, lakes, and groundwater are governed by a patchwork of laws and regulations, though they cross provincial or territorial boundaries without restriction.
One thing is certain: coming up with a better definition of a national water policy is not going to make it spontaneously materialize. We have defined this issue well and have a good point of reference. What is required now is political will and recognition that such a policy is essential to Canada’s self-interest – and nothing less.
CWRAFor example, the Canadian Water Resources Association took the issue on in 2008 with the release of Toward a Canadian National Water Strategy, authored by well-Rob-de-Loeknown water policy expert Rob de Loe. Yet implementation remains elusive on this subject despite this and other high profile efforts.
More recently, Ralph Pentland and Chris Wood’s 2013 down the drainbook, Down the Drain: How We are Failing to Protect Our Water Resources, explained the unimplemented but ambitious 1987 Federal Water Policy,and that little progress has been seen since federally. Their arguments and facts that our water resources are an issue of national importance and cannot be left to the provinces are compelling. Pentland and Wood stated: “Legislation currently in force and Confederation’s founding documents empower Canada’s federal Crown to take robust action to defend water, waterways, and the life that inhabits them.”
Canada’s past approach to the contrary, the federal government absolutely does have the power to ensure our national water resources are kept healthy and sound. Canada
Canadians might believe this country is advanced in its environmental policy, but we are lagging behind other Image result for environmental protection agency (epa)jurisdictions. Even Republican U.S. President Richard Nixon recognized the importance of a national water policy. He founded
the  Environmental Protection Agency  (EPA), which subsequently led to the Clean Water and Safe DrinkingSAFE WATER ACT Water acts.  Nixon facilitated some pretty ambitious national water protection in a country not known for its love of federal regulation.
Canada’s more recent approach Of discontinuing environmental round-tables, restricting scientists from speaking publicly, and shuttering cottages on certain lakes might seem like the time isn’t ripe for a national water policy. Perhaps the time will never be right exactly, but as water professionals we must continue to advocate for it.

DESMOND TUTUDesmond Tutu visited some of Canada’s northern watersheds this spring. His famous quote, “I am not an optimist, I am a prisoner of hope,” seemed to capture the mood up there. But he said something else.
ch7_11If we apply this insight to a national water policy, it can be seen that the pillars of the bridge are largely in place. They are there as the result of excellent past work of many in this country and within other parts of the world. The reasonableness is in those pillars; it is up to us to build the rest of the bridge—hopefully with more magnanimity than realpolitik—but it must get built. 

 STEPHEN BRAUNStephen Braun is a principal
and water resources engineer
with GeoProcess Research
Associates.

RAINGRID LOGOHe is a founding
partner of RainGrid Inc.

CWRAand is currently the Ontario branch president of
the 
Canadian Water Resources Association.

Related link

http://www.canadians.org/waterpolicy-info 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=er3pJzAmouw

Canadian humour ~ You’ll Love Our Winters! Ha! ha!

  I’ve got a few dozen jokes about Canada in the wintertime
and will divide them into 2 blogs.

BOSTON SNOW2

The following youtube video, “Boston Blizzard 2015 #Snowlapse – Watch the snow pile up! (40-hour time lapse in HD)” was published on Jan 28, 2015. It is a time lapse of the 2015 Boston blizzard from 3 pm on January 26 to 8 am on January 28, 2015.

The video was created from 5,000 images, recorded at 30-second intervals on a GoPro. The snowlapse was recorded on a roof in Back Bay Boston. For reference, the tall building on the far left is the Hancock Tower. The building in the distance in the middle is the Westin Copley Plaza and the illuminated “The” is from the roof of The Lenox Hotel.

WATER DROPLET1_FOR BLOG ICONThis winter, which is one for the records, many of our American friends to the south are also experiencing record breaking temperatures and snowfalls.  Hang in their folks ~ they tell us that there really is a spring season at the end of this long white tunnel!

LAUGHING2GIMPCROPPED

You’ve probably run out of places to pile the snow as you try to dig out, so just forget about it for now and  snuggle up with a blankie and a warm cup of cocoa to enjoy these cartoon jokes.

JOKE1 JOKE2 JOKE3 JOKE4 JOKE5 JOKE6 JOKE7 JOKE8   JOKE11 JOKE10JOKE12

Whoops! Looks like I lied about spring
being at the end of the white tunnel!

WATER DROPLET HAPPY ICON GIMPCROPPEDHave a great weekend and try to get out to enjoy a winter activity or two with family and friends… 

Hope you’ll visit with us again next week.

Adaptation Strategies Needed for The Great Lakes

FIRST IMAGE

The following article, “The Great Lakes Need Adaptation Experiments”, by Gail Krantzberg and Sommer Abdel-Fattah, appeared in watercanada’s July/August publication.

3RD PARATo mitigate the negative impacts of climate change on the Great
Lakes basin ecosystem, it is essential to plan for and adapt current programs and policies. Adaptive strategies need to be specific enough to address the driver of degradation. In the Great Lakes, temperature increases will be particularly important in shallow areas, so adaptation strategies are needed to protect, for example, wetland habitats and biodiversity.

WATER DROPLET1_FOR BLOG ICONI found an excellent youtube video, ” Municipal Adaptation and Resiliency Service”, posted Jan. 16, 2014, that will clarify and /or add to many points in this article. (The Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative is launching a Municipal Adaptation and Resiliency Service (MARS) for its member municipalities, to help them accelerate and expand their adaptation activities, to be ready for the next storm.  Visit glslcities.org/mars.cfm for more information.)

2ND LAST PARAWith more intense precipitation events, adaptation strategies that address non-point source pollution are prudent. Precautionary actions should include measures to reduce soil erosion, address land and water quality degradation, anticipate infrastructure to avoid flooding, and avert infrastructure failure. RIPARIAN BUFFER3Measures include the creation of riparian buffer strips, the manipulation of stormwater pathways, the increase of permeable surfaces, and erosion control on steep slopes. Further, attention should be paid to infrastructural changes to ensure the integrity of harbours, marinas, and piers as well as improvement of navigational aids and hydrographic charting. 

CLIMATE CHANGE MONITORWhile recent efforts have focused on the capacity of practitioners to understand how the changing climate impacts water quality and quantity, there are limited examples of adaptation being implemented. Challenges that explain why implementation is limited include:
1 A lack of funding to test and implement innovative technologies;
2 A lack of institutional capacity for adaptation planning and implementation;
3 Cuts to federal science in support of technical modelling of climate projections to reduce uncertaintyin results;
4 Complexities of multi-sector coordination;
5 Fragmentation across agencies;
6 A lack of social and community involvement, with trends to an increasing lack of public concern or confidence in climate science;
7 A lack of adaptation policy and enforced policy; and
8 Few examples of adaptive studies that have demonstrated effective solutions.
At present, most Great Lakes states and provinces have adopted climate action plans that provide greenhouse-gas emission inventory data and make emission reduction recommendations. While there is a general emphasis on the environmental risks and the value of reducing emissions, much less attention has been given to adaptation. Where plans do exist, most of the focus has been placed on responses to changes in water availability and demand, and how to manage increases in demand for water, much less so to water quality and ecosystem integrity.

PARA2BUFFER

On the positive side, the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative launched the Municipal Adaptation and Resiliency Service (MARS) in January 2014 to help municipalities accelerate and expand their adaptation activities. This initiative will provide a portal for municipal members to access climate and adaptation information and resources that will also serve as an interactive forum for information sharing.
EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGEThe push for adaptation interventions comes from understanding the ramifications of climate-related changes to plausible ecosystem impacts through preventative action. Adaptation efforts must include capacity building, policy innovation, natural resource management actions, and engaging the Great Lakes community in the implementation and evaluation of those efforts. 
GAIL

 Gail Krantzberg is the director of the Centre
for Engineering and Public Policy at McMaster
University.

SOMMER TO CROP

Sommer Abdel-Fattah is an NSERC
post-doctoral government fellow and lecturer
in the bachelor of engineering and technology
program at McMaster University.

 

Funny Valentine’s Day a la Disney

1-DISNEY VALENTINES

TRANSPARENT HEARTGIMPHappy Valentine’s Day
from your friends
at Rainsoft Ottawa.

TRANSPARENT HEARTGIMP~ A funny and really cute trip
down Valentine’s memory lane
with some of your favorite Disney cartoon characters ~

WATER DROPLET HAPPY ICON GIMPCROPPEDI hope you enjoy the animation effects in this youtube video I found and the charming  accompaniment music, “I See the Light” by Mandy Moore, Zachary Levi.
Also, I searched soundcloud for the header music, “I See the Light” for your enjoyment.

TRANSPARENT HEARTGIMPHave fun watching the adorable Disney characters’ cavorting antics as they try to seal their true love.

“My Disney Valentine”, Uploaded on Feb 12, 2011 ~ https://www.youtube.com/embed/U6uELIxMaS4“><iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ 

TRANSPARENT HEARTGIMPEnjoy and share with

family and friends!

RAINSOFT RAINSOFT WHOLE HOUSE_GIMP

TRANSPARENT HEARTGIMPEternally Pure Water Systems, Inc.
5450 Canotek Rd., Unit 66-67
Ottawa, ON K1J 9G5
613-742-0058

 

 

Oil and Gas Versus Nature

SASK OIL AND GAS

Water Under Pressure ~ Navigating competing demands between agriculture and natural resource development, by Chad Eggerman appeared in watercanada’s July/Aug, 2014 issue.

SASK AGRICULTURE LOGOSaskatchewan’s economy has been growing at a feverish pace the past few years on the pillars of agriculture, mining, and oil-and-gas SASK ECONOMYdevelopment. Although growth has recently settled at more
sustainable levels, recent discussion in the province has centered around how to
best use water resources in future development. This is an ongoing discussion in jurisdictions in Canada where both agriculture and natural resource development coexist, most prominently British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, and Quebec. The agriculture sector is traditionally the largest user of water in Saskatchewan, particularly for irrigation in the West Central region of DIEF LAKEthe province around Lake Diefenbaker. By some estimates, there is the potential to expand as much as 500,000 additional acres of land to irrigation around the lake. The Government of Saskatchewan views this expansion as a major opportunity for economic growth and to attract investment. There are a number SASK IRRIGATION LOGOof irrigation districts in Saskatchewan that are administered by the Ministry of Agriculture under The Irrigation Act, 1996. Saskatchewan has been mining natural resources for many years but recent multibillion-dollar expansions and greenfield projects have raised Wollaston Lake uranium minesthe profile of mining in the province. The most established resources are uranium in the north and potash in the south. The potash-producing region in Saskatchewan directly overlaps prime agricultural land as well as considerable oil-and-gas reserves. SASK MININGThere are two methods to mine potash: solution mining and conventional shaft mining.

The solution-mining process involves the construction of a well field composed of at least two drill holes—one to send hot water down to the potash-bearing zones of rock, and another to bring the potash-laden brine up to the surface after percolating in an underground katepwa_lakecavern. Solution mining uses vast quantities of water. Currently, Vale proposes to build a 70-kilometre water pipeline to Katepwa Lake in the Qu’Appelle Valley to pump more than 40 million litres per day for their Kronau project (the equivalent of 15 KRONAU PROJECTOlympic-sized swimming pools). K+S Potash Canada is currently building a new solution potash mine and is planning on using up to 60 K S POTASHmillion litres of water per day. Different regulations in Saskatchewan apply depending on whether the water comes from the surface or the ground, the type of mining (for potash, solution or conventional), and the location (uranium in the north is regulated differently than potash in the south). The oil-and-gas industry in Saskatchewan OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAhas experienced rapid growth recently due largely to continued expansion of the use of hydraulic fracturing (or fracking), which involves pumping pressurized
water underground to fracture rock to extract oil or gas. There were 3,200 horizontally fracked wells sunk in Saskatchewan from 1990 to 2013. On average, there are about 3,000 new oil HORIZONTAL VERSUS FRACTUREwells (both vertical and horizontal) drilled in Saskatchewan each year. Any fresh water to be used in Saskatchewan for fracking is subject to appropriate approvals from various provincial water agencies.  Residual fracking fluids are recycled and disposed of at provincially approved waste processing facilities or stored. The discharge or storage of used fluids into the surface environment is prohibited in Saskatchewan. The risk of water availability for farmers, miners, and oil-and-gas companies is becoming evident. Water supply agreements between miners and water suppliers, like SaskWater or a SASK WATERmunicipality, are becoming increasingly difficult to negotiate. The water supply agreement is a critical agreement to provide a certain amount of water at a set price. There are very significant risks for potash solution mines, which use water to operate if water supply is curtailed or discontinued. Oil companies are having to travel further and pay more for water for fracking. Intensive livestock and increased spraying (which uses fresh water) in Saskatchewan are also putting pressure on water supplies. There are a number of innovative projects in the province to mitigate these risks. Oil-and-gas companies are starting to use treated wastewater for their fracking operations. SELLING WASTEWATERMunicipalities in Alberta and Saskatchewan are now selling treated wastewater to oil companies. The treated wastewater can come from lagoons or from grey water discharge. This is a new revenue stream for municipalities and increases WESTERN POTASH LOGOthe certainty of water supply for oil-and-gas companies. Western Potash Corp.’s new potash mine in Milestone, Saskatchewan recently received environmental REGINAassessment approval for the facility, including the use of City of Regina treated effluent as the industrial water source for its solution mining process. The water is purified to prevent foaming or scaling. This is the first potash mine in the world to use treated water. CANADA MAPIt is expected the discussion between farmers and extractors of natural resources will continue in Saskatchewan and across Canada, with innovative technologies and agreements providing a way forward.

CHAD EGGERMANChad Eggerman is a partner in the Saskatoon office of Miller Thomson LLP and assists owners and contractors to develop projects in the natural resource industry