Centre Wellington to develop new water policy

Township considering recommission of two wells in anticipation of projected water deficiency

ELORA – Centre Wellington Township has enough water capacity to service the community until 2036, but there is “significant risk” if something isn’t done before 2041.

Centre Wellington council heard a presentation on May 25 from Martin Keller and Sonja Strynatka  of the Grand River Conservation Authority and Kyle Davis, risk management official with the township, on the Tier 3 Water Study.

The technical end of the study is now concluded, “and the current system can meet demand until 2031 to 2036. But the current wells will be insufficient by 2041,” Strynatka said.

Water conservation will help but won’t be enough on its own, she said.

The township is considering recommissioning the F2 and F5 wells to add capacity for a growing population.

“It is our intention to do an assessment (of F2),” said Colin Baker, managing director of infrastructure. “

So we’ll study it first, do a small-scale pumping test just to verify the impact and if it’s unacceptable. This is seen as low-hanging fruit.”

With the technical studies complete, the township will begin working on a new water policy that will consider both the Tier 3 Water Study and the Water Supply Master Plan.

The master plan indicates the system will be in deficit by 2026 – 10 years earlier than the Tier 3 study.

Technical results, existing regulations, water-taking permits, natural heritage systems and climate change and its impacts will also come under consideration as the policy is developed.

There will also be more public consultation.

And there is some urgency.

“We want projects to begin before 2026,” Baker said. “By 2026 we will have limited capacity.”