CORNER BROOK The council in Port au Choix will be meeting soon to discuss its water crisis.
Mayor Carolyn Lavers said the summer heat and drought, combined with a lighter snowfall and earlier snow melt this winter, has the town’s water supply diminished. She says the town will run out of water in the coming days, especially with regard to the fish plant, unless there is some rain. She said a “good” three days of rain is required to get them through.
There is a regular council meeting Tuesday, and a date is expected to be set for a meeting specific to the water woes. It’s not just the current crisis, but a long-term contingency plan the mayor said council has to establish.
“This is not something that is going to go away,” Lavers said. “It’s the worst year, and it is unprecedented this year, but we are going to need an awful lot of rain and precipitation in the next few months just to bring the ponds back up to their normal levels.”
She said historically the town’s people have not had to be wary of water consumption, but year-after-year more water has been used than mother nature has returned to the ponds. There was concern in 2009, but she said that was considered an anomaly.
The mayor said the plant is near a shutdown as a result of the low water levels, and residents have been asked to conserve water. The mayor said people are not heeding the warnings, and are continuing to use water freely.
“I don’t think the message is getting through because people cannot really comprehend the fact we are surrounded by water and we have no clean drinking water,” she said.
“We are also living in this ‘me’ society, where they only worry about ‘me.’ They don’t worry about, think about or even consider anybody else. As long as the water is coming through their pipe, that’s all they are worried about.”
The fish plant in the town uses a lot of water, said the mayor, and increasingly so. She also said the workers there share a mentality with the residents: that water is plentiful.