CRD okays Elk/Beaver lake oxygenators, but want fed/provincial help

Algae Warning

The Capital Regional District board has approved installation of oxygenators at Elk/Beaver Lakes to tackle the frequent algae bloom issues -- but only if they get 50% support from other levels of government to help buy them.

Board Chair Colin Plant says the CRD is showing leadership offering to foot 50% of the bill because what happens on the water is under federal jurisdiction, while the water and lake bed is provincial jurisdiction:

" And if we can get more than 50%, then that would be a real win. We're talking approximatley $1.4 or $1.5-Million for the 2 oxygenators. And then an annual operating cost of about $100 to $150-thousand, and that's maintenance, electricity and oxydgen. Because even though we all breathe it for free -- that's air. Oxygen costs a little bit more."

A staff report says the algae blooms are triggered by runoff from logging, farming and development, which cause a slow build up of nutrients in the lake.   

Meantime, a warning has gone out for users of Beaver Lake that the water may be unsafe to enter due to high levels of bacteria from area wildlife.

Signs are being posted at the lake and further sampling is underway.

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