Saturday, September 02, 2006

Water Woes in Tofino?

Tofino businesses granted conditional opening

You may have read that the now very touristy community of Tofino British Columbia was in danger of turning away visitors this weekend due to a serious water shortage. It looks like the problem has been a combination of low water levels and a community that has grown gangbusters in recent years. It seems odd in that I always think of the west coast, and this is the very west a very rainy place. A local resort owner put $50k on the line to ship in some water, and it looks like the town won't have to close....this time.

Comments from west-coasters appreciated on this one....what the heck is going on out there?


tshsmom said...

My daughter told me about this yesterday.
I agree that it's probably a case of too many people for the ecosystem to handle.
This is much like the case of Arizona. Phoenix is growing at an astronomical rate. Now they want to ship(or pipe) water from OUR ecosystem(the Great Lakes) to theirs. I, personally, don't want our water diverted, so the people in Phoenix can water their lawns to create an illusion that doesn't belong on the desert!!

Stagg said...

What the heck is going on out there? Oh my god...when the rain forest runs out of afraid, be very afraid...

Wandering Coyote said...

This is huge news in BC, obviously. From what I can tell, there was a lot of finger-pointing going on between the municipal government and the businesses. The business owners blamed the city council for not regulating things properly and flinging this closure thing on them at the last minute. The mayor said the businesses have not cooperated with water restrictions that have been ongoing all summer. They are now trucking in water from Ucluelet which is 20 minutes down the highway. No rain in the forecast. The city admittedly has no way of enforcing water restrictions, and is now bringing bottled water in for residents. On the news this morning, some businesses have told visitors to just go home because they cannot accommodate them.

Anonymous said...

I know this is old news, but I had to put in my two bits. Its not unusual for water shortages here in our rain forest - (in the summer). Especially in spots, such as Galiano Island, (any of the islands for that matter), and certain areas of even the high rainfall zones. Water runs off fast here, (excellent drainage created from centuries of rainfall), especially in rocky regions, swoosh...into the sea.
That said, Tofino has had massive increases in development without the water infrastructure to support it. It has been said that the political climate in the town has made it difficult to come to decisions in the past on how to deal with water shortages. Having spent some time with an assortment of folk from Tofino, I can see why this could be challenging. This is not a negative comment, but only an observation that there are people settled, (year round and summer residents) there that represent a ton of political factions, (or so it seems to me), in equal-ish numbers. For example: biggish business, aboriginal issues, loggers, hippies, fishers, small business,green peacers, etc... I realize this is the case in many places, but I think in Tofino they are all participating in the political process, which could in fact slow decision making down if there are differing opinions, ( and there is alot of that! That is part of Tofino's charm). Which is what may have happened with the water fiasco. Both Uculet and Tofino have recieved grants from the government, (I can't remember if it was federal or provincial) to deal with the water problem some time ago.
There is water nearby, relatively speaking), Kennedy Lake, a huge lake....they just need to get it to the town.
Hi to you and tuffy p from sunny vancouver...yes, it does seem a little sunnier than I remember. Its good to be back!

mister anchovy said...

hey hey, the underground baker has surfaced! Hi there!!