Section 29 of the Drinking Water Protection Act is very broad. “If a person considers that there is a threat to their drinking water, the person may request the drinking water officer to investigate the matter”. The drinking water officer must review the request and consider whether an investigation is warranted. There are a number of similar situations that Interior Health anticipates will prompt the request for investigations. These include but are not limited to logging, cattle grazing, and recreational use in watersheds that contribute to water supplies for individuals or communities. (https://www.interiorhealth.ca/YourEnvironment/DrinkingWater/Documents/Conditions-on-Permit.pdf)
10 April, 2012
In 2004 the residents of the tiny community of Stillwater, near Powell River, learned that BC Timber Sales (BCTS) was planning to auction off the rights to clearcut 12.5 hectares in the Jefferd Creek watershed, which is the source of their drinking water. Well, it’s been a long fight, but after 8 years and a series of grants to the Committee for the Protection of Jefferd Creek from West Coast’s Environmental Dispute Resolution Fund, BCTS has agreed to scale its proposed 12.5 hectare cut down to 1.5 hectares – located well away from the Creek – because of concerns about the drinking water impacts. Congratulations to the Committee and to the Stillwater Improvement District for this victory for common sense.
In an effort to be heard, the Glade Watershed Protection Society (GWPS) has filed court documents which were served to Atco Wood Products, Kalesnikoff Lumber Company, and the Interior Health Authority Tuesday January 22, 2019: these court documents are an application for injunctive relief and was heard on February 4, 2019. The injunctive relief was a request that logging be legally deferred until the Judicial Review of the IHA’s decision has been made, and/or until the Forest Practices Board Investigation is completed. The application at that time was dismissed by the Court.
Additional information regarding the timber companies' proposed plans, a more concise look at data like existing turbidity and other factors may provide evidence to support a reconsideration of the s. 29 investigation.