Water Smart Salmo
With a commitment to water conservation, the Village of Salmo is an active Water Smart community for the second year in a row. The village has hired a Water Smart Ambassador to raise awareness of water conservation and to engage local residents to reduce outdoor water use. In the summer months the Water Smart Ambassador provides free residential lawn and garden irrigation assessments, as well as provides information regarding drought resistant landscaping, efficient irrigation, and gardening with native plants.
Salmo does not have water supply issues. Why should water be conserved?
Conserving water is easy and makes good sense from an economic, social, and environmental standpoint. Salmo sits atop pristine groundwater sources which must be respected and protected to ensure sustainability. Environmentally, these aquifers are sensitive to surface contamination and potential draw-down. Economically, the costs associated with operations, maintenance, capital upgrades, and pumping can be reduced though means of water conservation. Many communities across British Columbia are facing water shortages due to climate change. Part of being water smart is building resiliency against changing environmental conditions within our communities.
Salmo residents each use an average of 894 liters per day, 400 liters above the provincial average. Where is this water being used?
It is estimated that during peak demand most water use happens outdoors, as residents irrigate lawns and gardens. Salmo Village uses 3.5 times more water in the summer than in winter. Indoors, most of the water is used for flushing toilets, washing, and cleaning.
Over 5 years Salmo has reduced gross water demand by approximately 0.3 percent. What can residents do to save more water?
- Install low-flow showerheads (available for free from the Water Smart Ambassador). They deliver 6 liters of water per minute while conventional showerheads deliver 20-28 liters per minute.
- Toilets can account for 30% of indoor water use, either install a low-flow or dual flush toilet to save water. Alternatively, place a plastic pop bottle filled with water or sand and (capped) in your toilet tank to reduce the amount of water used per flush.
- Plant native or drought tolerant species in your landscape. Salmo’s Water Smart Ambassador will be hosting a xeriscaping workshop on June 8th at the village office (email for details).
- If you have a lawn, water it infrequently. This promotes deep roots and heartier drought tolerance. On average, one inch or less is needed to keep lawns happy throughout the summer.
- Use best practices for irrigation. Water only in the morning or early evening. Avoid over spray when sprinkling and use a hose timer to keep track of watering times.
The graph shows that from 2009 to 2015 the Village of Salmo has experienced a 0.3% decrease in gross community water demand.
The graph also shows how water use in Salmo increases in spring and summer. This is the period known as “peak demand,” when a community’s water use is at its highest.
Lawn watering is the main contributor to peak demand. By reducing peak demand,we reduce our impact on water supply, distribution and treatment infrastructure and on the environment.
From 2009 to 2015, Water Smart communities have reduced gross annual demand by an average of 11%.
What have we done so far?
- Improvements to data collection and analysis hardware and procedures – a necessary foundation for future water demand reduction action.
- Water Loss Management training (finding and fixing leaks within the water distribution system) for public work staff.
What are the best opportunities for improved water efficiency?
- Public water use efficiency education targeting reductions in outdoor (irrigation) demand.
- Implementation of water loss management best practices specifically including both night flow analysis and pressure management in the distribution system.
- Continued implementation of Commercial/Industrial water metering
Where Your Drinking Water Comes From
The Village of Salmo gets its drinking water from two ground water wells, which provide sufficient water supply for the Village’s current needs. Water use in Salmo increases dramatically in the summer-but this doesn’t mean we should only reduce outdoor water use. Rather, when we reduce our indoor water use, we reduce Salmo’s average daily demand.
In 2016, water restrictions were put in place during summer months requiring residents to water on opposite days depending on odd or even civic address. The Village of Salmo does not currently have any water regulations in place.
Meet Salmo’s Water Smart Ambassador.
The Water Smart Ambassador program aims to reduce outdoor water use in the summer as it accounts for a significant percentage of the annual water demand in the Basin. Water Smart Ambassadors will be educating residents by offering free Lawn and Garden Water Assessments to help residents better understand outdoor watering requirements and efficient water use.
Meet Chris Black, Salmo’s 2017 Water Smart Ambassador.
A student of Environmental Planning at Selkirk College, Chris is passionate about protecting the regions valuable water sources.
What is a lawn and garden water assessment?
Chris is available to book an assessment at your convenience. In 30 minutes the Ambassador will:
- Assess your soil conditions;
- Identify current watering practices and look for ways to conserve water;
- Determine the watering needs of the landscape;
- Assess your manual or automatic watering system and make changes to increase efficiencies;
- Set up your free garden hose timer; and
- Enter you for a chance to win a free rain barrel prize draw!
To get in touch with your local Water Smart Ambassador please call (250) 505-8167 or email [email protected].
Low-Flow Shower Head
Book an appointment for a free Lawn and Garden Water Assessment and get a FREE Low Flow Shower Head.