Cranbrook, BC (Tuesday, July 26, 2022) – The way you are able to use water outdoors in your yard and garden is changing after Council adopted the new Outdoor Water Use and Regulation Bylaw Monday night.
In an effort to mitigate the effects of climate change, the new bylaw and updated Outdoor Water Management policy will regulate outdoor water use year-round, while also clearly defining four distinct water regulation stages. Moving to each water restriction stage will be determined by the water elevations found at the Phillips Reservoir.
Under the new bylaw, Stage One will continue to see even numbered properties use water on Monday, Thursday and Saturday. Odd numbered properties may use water on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday. Outdoor water usage will only be allowed within the hours of 5:00am and 10:00am and 8:00pm to 11:00pm.
Stage Two regulations will see watering days reduced to two days per week from three. City operations will also change at this stage with reduced irrigation for City parks, green spaces, Moir Park, the Kinsmen Quads and Confederation Park ball diamonds.
Stage Three regulations will see watering days reduced to one day per week using spring-loaded spray nozzles and automatic irrigation systems only. Watering of your vegetable gardens and edible plants is permitted. Watering permits for new lawns will be cancelled. All City irrigation activities will again be reduced at all parks and playing fields.
Stage Four regulations are the highest level under the new bylaw. At this stage, all outdoor water usage will be severely regulated to preserve the City’s water system. No watering of lawns, gardens, trees or shrubs is permitted either using sprinklers or by hand. The filling of both residential and commercial pools, hot tubs, fountains, ponds and other water features will not allowed at this stage. There are no exemptions available from stage four.
“Cranbrook’s water usage of 645 litres per person per day (2019) is above the national average of 411 litres per person per day (2019). We have also seen several days over the past 2 years where the daily water consumption was equivalent to a population of 45,000 residents. That is over double our current population of just over 21,000,” says Jason Perrault, Utilities Manager with Public Works. “Last year’s drought saw the Province issue a Stage 3 level drought for the entire Kootenay region. This had caused the City to review current water management practices. We feel that this bylaw will move the City’s water management to a more sustainable level that includes industry best practices.”
This Bylaw is enforceable and any Outdoor Water Use that does not follow regulations may be subject to fines and penalties.
Over the next several months, the City will be providing information to the public and all customers of the City’s potable water supply about these changes. You are encouraged to familiarize yourself with these changes by visiting our website www.cranbrook.ca and search ‘Water Restrictions’.