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Gibsons objects to drilling

Gibsons objects to drilling

The Town of Gibsons is unhappy about the SCRD’s plans to drill test wells on Mahan Road that would tap into the Gibsons aquifer.

A staff report attached to the Nov. 7 Gibsons council agenda suggests that Gibsons will oppose any investigative drilling into the Gibsons aquifer until the Town and the SCRD establish a joint groundwater management plan.

The SCRD is seeking groundwater sources to supplement its existing supply from Chapman Lake which has been inadequate to deal with prolonged seasonal droughts. At the Oct. 19 SCRD Infrastructure Service Committee, a presentation from hydro geological consultants identified Mahan Road as a promising site for a well.

However, that well would tap into the aquifer that provides drinking water to almost 75 per cent of Town residents. (The remaining residents, in upper Gibsons, are supplied by the SCRD water system.)

The Gibsons staff report said that the Town has applied for groundwater licences for its four wells under the new BC Water Sustainability Act, which came into effect last year. If the licences are approved, Gibsons will have the rights to up to 500,000 cubic metres of water per year, but that is not enough to supply the Town’s projected ultimate population of 10,000.  Donna McMahon

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