Copy of a letter to the regional water manager:
Re: Catalyst application short term water use
I am writing to voice my objection to this proposed application. I have lived on the shore of Cowichan Lake, since 1972. My family uses the lake water for our domestic use.
I think it is time to recognize that Cowichan Lake water and the river it supports and the environmental benefits accompanying all that water is far more valuable for human use than to continue to exploit it for industrial profits.
It may be acceptable during rainy times of excess supply to continue that practice. But when shortages occur, as they have in recent years, it is obvious that conservation and water rationing, although helpful, will not satisfy the need. It is agree that shortages in the future are very likely.
If Catalyst needs more water during those times, they should incorporate a desalination plant on their property and take ocean water as needed to supply the mill. The cost of procuring water in this way will be expensive, but setting up and operating a pumping system, as they propose, will not be cheap either and anyway, it is only a stop-gap solution. Adding a desalination plant to their operation in Crofton would give them assurance of a constant supply of water, as drawn from either source, now and in the future.
I’m sure raising the weir to accommodate more water storage is not a done deal and it will not be inexpensive. Not even considering the politics involved with that proposal.