Friday, June 10, 2016

Flooding onus placed on Lumby

by Richard Rolke - Vernon Morning Star posted Jun 9, 2016 at 10:00 AM
Lumby is being told to be part of the solution instead of just complaining about flooding. The Greater Vernon Advisory Committee will ask Lumby if it wants to partner in raising the dams on Duteau Creek to ease high water flows. “It’s a bigger issue than they can deal with themselves and it’s bigger than us,” said director Doug Dirk. “If they want more flood mitigation, we need to work together.” One possibility is that Lumby and GVAC could team up to lobby senior government for grants for dam upgrades. “It doesn’t mean they are paying,” said director Bob Fleming of pushing the burden on to Lumby. Lumby has consistently linked flooding to GVAC’s management of reservoirs on the Aberdeen plateau, and particularly allowing water to spill out of reservoirs. Director Mike Macnabb says GVAC is not entirely to blame for the situation and Lumby bears some responsibility. “The reality is that Lumby is on a flood plain,” he said. Regional District of North Okanagan staff recently looked at options for flood control. GVAC’s master water plan calls for the Aberdeen reservoir to be raised by four meters to facilitate growth and protect against water shortages in multi-year droughts. “Lumby could participate by raising the reservoir another metre (total to five metres), increasing storage by 3,477 megalitres,” said Zee Marcolin, water manager, in a report. “This area of the reservoir would not be filled except during years when flood protection is required for Lumby.” Raising the dam by an additional one metre could cost $3.5 million, plus there would be annual operating costs.

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