Rowers make their way across Elk Lake at sunset. The Capital Regional District invites the community to come out and learn about how to get involved in supporting the watershed management at Elk/Beaver Lake. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)

CRD hosts public forum to discuss water quality at Elk/Beaver Lake

Toxic bacteria and invasive aquatic plants among the water quality issues

The Capital Regional District (CRD) is hosting a public information session and forum on July 31 to discuss the watershed management plan for Elk/Beaver Lake.

Community members are encouraged to come down to the Greek Community Hall on Elk Lake Drive to learn about water quality issues, share ideas and find out how to support the watershed plan.

The lakes are part of a regional park and the area is heavily used by locals and tourists. However, according to the CRD website, the water quality at Elk/Beaver Lake was deemed to be an issue back in the 1960s and has continued to decline.

The CRD says toxic cyanobacteria is present in the water, the fish habitat needs to be improved and the invasive aquatic plants need to be controlled. Substances from local farming and forestry have also affected the water quality at the lake.

READ ALSO: No more scum at Elk Lake: CRD

READ ALSO: CRD increases patrols in parks for the summer as more people head outdoors

In response to the water quality issues, the Intergovernmental Working Group (IWG) was formed and it’s members include the District of Saanich; the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, Island Health and the CRD.

Lake staff also formed a group in 2016 to manage their collaborations with the IWG and other affected parties.

The July 31 public information session will begin with an open house from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., followed by a presentation from the CRD from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Snacks and refreshments will be provided.

Free parking is available at the hall.

For more information about the Elk/Beaver Lake Initiative, visit the CRD website.


@devonscarlett
devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

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