Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Letter To The Editor - Nov 28, 2007 - From Ed Monteith - Water Management Plan, Bamboozled by the experts again?

As a resident of Langley Township, I am sitting at my keyboard almost in a state of disbelief as I keep thinking about the township's headlong rush to solve the problem of our diminishing aquifer levels. Compounding this disbelief, is the direction that our council is about to take when they decide that metering our private well water will be front and center when solving this long and predictable downhill slide regarding the state of these aquifers. Then, as if this enormously important decision needs nothing in way of more inteligent input, our council is presently scheduled to ram this through by December 31st of this year. Ladies and gentlemen, you are about to see what you get, when you don't pay attention to who you vote for at municipal elections. If you own a well, be sure to attend last open house on this issue, at the Murrayville Firehall from 4 to 8 PM on november 29th You should then try to filter the bafflegarb from the reality of what's about to happen.

The Sunday Times (Nov.25th) has a quote from Dixon-Warren, the township's engineering department's groundwater specialist. He states that the water management aim is to establish guidelines for preserving both the quality and quantity of groundwater. Let's stop and think for a momment right there. Why? Because the TOWNSHIP itself has failed to do this, and continues to do so on a daily basis. They have done this time and time again, when they have allowed poorly planned development practices to destroy our forest ground cover, which retains our rainfall, which in turn allows clean water to filter into our aquifers. They have turned a blind eye when their development methods have allowed water to go from rooftop to rain gutter, and then to storm sewers and ditches, where it is lost on a fast track to nowhere useful. Flash floods in ditches and streams give us strong evidence of this after every heavy rainfall.. Dixon- Warren then goes on to say: "You can't manage it (water) unless you know who is using it and what is coming in and out" Well exactly my dear Doctor Watson, but let's get to the cause of the illness, and that is the township's poor planning and engineering practices sitting right there front and center. Methods of water RETENTION has never entered their minds I can only assume, yet in the State of Florida it has been a comon practice as far back as I can remember, and that's over 50 years. Such inteligence and foresight was perhaps never considered, and now the township has chosen to treat the symptom of this ailment (diminishing supply) rather than the very blatant cause which is located at the front end of the supply and consume cycle. Open your eyes Mr. Mayor and council et all. Look right across the road from the City Hall behind London Drugs, and you will see enough water wasted with each flash flood, to feed every well in the township for at least a month or more. It can no longer be absorbed and held by the vegetation that you have reclessly allowed to be destroyed by the gung-ho development on the south slope of the willoughby escarpment. Nice going guys !

A township manager involved with the water resources stated very loosely in the same article that the township "Expects" the provincial government to pick up the cost of water meters estimated at between $1000 and $2000 dollars. Hurry up with a firm promise here, because we only have until the 31st of December before this headlong rush to a huge blunder becomes irreversable. Most private well owners already have $20,000 and more tied up in their water systems and also have maintenance costs added as well. Charging for additional hardware for the water delivered from these facilities will be adding insult to injury.

Before I go on any further, let's turn our eyes towards Darth Vader, who lurks manacingly at the source of this messy controversy. Darth is of course is a symbol of none other that the Ministry of Agriculture. Remember them? You should, because they have already brought us misery via their letter of the law enforcement of the Right to Farm Act. Oh yeah, they are very friendly to the environement. NOT ! I'll just remind everyone how they have ignored our envirnment regularly each time they confuse INDUSTRY with REAL FARMING, and readers can assemble their own list. You might begin with with mushroon composters , and how their leash seems to get longer with every passing day as they are excused for the foul air they create in abundance.

At this moment there is every reason for the township council to slow the process, before starting with the metering of private wells. That procedure would be a costly, and a very large and complex program to implement fairly. There are far too many contributing factors to the diminishing levels of our water tables, and a fast track will contribute nothing sensible when prioritizing solutions. Let's start first with the worst offender among the others, and that is without a doubt the entity that holds the reins of this runaway horse. Yes indeed, it's the township itself. I'm sure that Confusious once said: "Check horse's mouth before looking up other end for problem". (LFP Editor's note - see 3 part Richter report for more)

Ed Monteith

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