Tuesday, July 15, 2008

How To Kill 2 Mosquitoes With One Swat - Letter To The Editor by Wally Martin

July 14 2008
Mayor and Council
Township of Langley

Re: How to kill 2 mosquitoes with one swat

Last Tuesday July 8 my wife Sharon and I spent the day in Fort Langley producing a Bridal Fair at the Fort Langley Community Hall. It was a very successful event with the participation of 100 business people and over 1,000 young ladies that attended. The day was perfect. Our attendance was up 40% from last year. The only negative thing we had was the mosquitoes. For many of the attendees it was their first visit to Fort Langley. We very rarely see any mosquitoes in Murrayville so it was a bit of a surprise for us.

I got thinking about the letter (copy attached)I wrote to council in the early spring regarding ground water in Langley. Fort Langley has too much ground water too close to the surface while the rest of Langley doesn’t have enough. The area surrounding Fort Langley is an underground lake. Taking this water would no doubt lower the water table slightly and help alleviate the mosquito problem. The Fort Langley basin is the perfect place to drill more wells.

Wally Martin
21628 48 Ave
Langley BC V3A 3M8

(Below letter written in early spring)

Langley’s Non existent Water Problem

There really is no crisis in water supply for Langley. There is a crisis in confidence in the leadership of Langley. The past few months have caused unnecessary anxiety as the population has been lead to believe there is a problem with the water supply.

There are a number of good alternatives to augment the water supply in Langley that have been advanced. These include the north shore lakes, Cultus Lake & Harrison Lake. Also more wells can be drilled in Langley. 2 other options have been overlooked. One is to build a desalination plant. The south west corner of Langley is 4 miles from tidewater. Thousands of cities around the world treat seawater to use it for drinking water. The process is simple and the distance to draw the water is close. Many cities draw seawater from much longer distances. Another alternative and probably the best is to draw water from the Fraser River. The Fraser River flows at a rate of 5,000 cubic meters per second. This is a flow rate that in one day can supply all of Langley’s water needs for 25 years. The good thing about the Fraser is the quality of the water. Fish live in the Fraser River. Living fish are always an indicator of good water quality. Needless to say the Fraser has better water than many of Langley’s wells. The fact is that Langley is already drawing water from the Fraser River. Some might be skeptical about this notion but I will explain.

Presently Langley Township pumps water from 17 wells to supply water to 85% of the Langley Township population. 38% of the Langley Township well water comes from the Salmon River well on 88 Ave at the west side of Fort Langley village. This is the best and largest producing well in the Township and far exceeds any of the other wells. It was drilled in the early 70’s and the press reports of the day were that it was a “gusher”. It also has excellent quality characteristics. The Salmon River well is a mere 60 feet deep. This well is actually drawing water from the Fraser River. A quick glance at the geology of north Langley shows that the water bearing material that supplies the Salmon River well is a one mile wide layer of sand that fills a crescent shaped basin that completely surrounds the village of Fort Langley. This crescent shaped basin is directly connected to the Fraser River like a giant pipeline. The Fraser River is also in a sand filled basin. The water travels thru the sand where it is constantly filtered. It is pumped at the well and we drink it. It is excellent water.

Many of the Townships other 17 producing wells were actually drilled in bad locations. They were drilled too close to areas where many private wells were already in existence. This has caused problems for the private wells. This is not a problem in the area surrounding the Salmon River well because it is a flood plain and no one lives on the flood plain. Langley can simply drill a few more wells in the Fort Langley basin and phase out the other wells. Additionally the east and west water systems need to be connected. It is actually quite simple. The interconnect would need to run from 232 St to 248 St. a total distance of 4 miles and Aldergrove would then enjoy the same water quality that is in the west system.

There is a cost to all of this. Recently the Township of Langley was proposing to install meters on all private wells in Langley. At a cost of $10,000 per well (a conservative estimate) that would have been $50 million dollars. The interesting thing about this bizarre metering idea was that after spending the $50 million it would not have produced one drop of water for Township of Langley residents. The above ideas I am advancing will not cost anywhere close to $50 million and they will increase the water supply.

Another good idea would be to take water directly from the Fraser River and treat it. This would be the same process that is being used to treat the lake water from the north shore. The intake pipes could be installed in such a way as to take advantage of the sand filtration under the river. Not a difficult concept.

Langley does not have a water shortage but rather has numerous viable options to choose from.

Thank you
Wally Martin
21628 48 Ave
Langley BC V3A 3M8
604 533 5569

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