Qualicum Beach — keep your water

The recent letter from Max Kellerman made it clear that the committee for the RDN might wish to annex the QB water wells.

The recent letter from Max Kellerman (The NEWS, Oct. 27) made it clear that the committee for the Regional District of Nanaimo might wish to annex the Qualicum Beach water wells.

The RDN presumably has the power to do so, but it should be remembered that Canada is a democracy and that private property cannot be taken away without a good reason. It is questionable if one exists in this case.

British Columbia owes its temperate climate to the fact that it lies beside the largest body of water on earth. The colder months produce the bulk of the precipitation and the summers are relatively dry.

Steepness of terrain and a thin regional topsoil cause a rapid rate of water run-off to the sea. During the summer, water comes mainly from either natural or artificial reservoirs and that is when shortages occur. Most are inconvenient, but not serious.

This district has a few problems with chronic, or potentially chronic, water shortages. Other areas have their own shortages, so the problems can only be fixed by developing new storage areas.

As Kellermann points out, the scheme suggested by the RDN would be expensive to install and run. There are also likely to be distribution problems. For example, the reservoir at Qualicum Beach is limited in extent and requires careful control to avoid permanent damage.

It is clear that the RDN will have to present its plan to public scrutiny, before proceeding further. It might be appropriate to remind the RDN of the old adage that says a camel is a horse that was designed by a committee.

Jim DrummondQualicum Beach

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