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Fix Noel's Pond flooding problem at its root, say residents

Landowners Don Cormier and Don White told officials of the Department of Environment and Climate Change flooding in the community of Noel’s Pond needs to be fixed from the root of the problem.

On a bridge near a dam at the end of Noel’s Pond in Stephenville, are Ali Khan, third from left, manager of the hydrologic modeling section with the Water Source Management Division, MHA John Finn, Chad Blundon, director of climate change, Don Cormier and Don White.

Cormier, a resident of the community of Noel’s Pond, and White, a resident of Stephenville who owns a large tract of land in Noel’s Pond, said the dam at the end of Noel’s Pond is the cause.

Cormier said that dam was put there to raise the level in the pond to ensure water needed by the former Abitibi Mill was available. He said now that the mill is gone there is no need for the dam, which he said is responsible for raising the groundwater level in his community by about seven feet.

“There’s nowhere for the water to go but back up into our community,” he told Ali Khan, manager of the hydrologic modeling section with the Water Source Management Division and Chad Blundon, director of climate change.

While Khan wouldn't comment on it, he did say he and Blundon were there to look at the problem, and that it was good to see the lay of the land first hand and get local input.

John Finn, MHA for Stephenville-Port au Port District, said Friday was a great opportunity to have local knowledge shared with officials of the department.

“The flood risk mapping is a very important concern for all residents in Noel’s Pond,” he said.

Finn said in his role, the intention is to help connect department officials with people in the community in an effort for all to gain a greater understanding.

White and Cormier showed the officials different areas in Noel’s Pond, including a former railway spur line that is no longer used, but which White said results in issues with water backup in the community.



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