My Question: Site C Dam vs Drought. Water worries rising for businesses in B.C. By Jen St. Denis

We all are aware of the severity of Droughts experienced in N. America. This Discussion Post particularly asks your attention to TWO maps of British Columbia. 


Story:   By  Jen St. Denis 

There are usually birds flying around Tim Mock’s farm near Duncan and woodland animals rustling around in the brush surrounding his property.

Not this year.

“It’s dry, no doubt about that,” Mock said. “We’ve noticed a lot less flies. … We’re noticing fewer swallows, we’re not hearing as many little reptilian creatures, frogs and things like that, because the wet areas dried out so quickly.”

In his 67 years living near the Cowichan River, chicken farmer Bob Crawford has never seen the river this low.

Baked fish

Fish could also be affected if the warm, dry temperatures continue. If fish such as salmon get too hot while travelling back to inland spawning grounds, they become sluggish and are more likely to die before they can reproduce.

“When there’s a low flow and a lot of sun, the water will warm up to extreme temperatures,” said Tony Farrell, a professor of zoology at the University of British Columbia. “The reason the Fraser stays reasonably cool during the summer is because a lot of the freshet is from snowmelt. If there’s no snowpack, that’s not contributing [cold water].”

If the Fraser River gets too warm, fishing in the river is curtailed to protect the stocks. A combination of low water levels and warm water has led to mass fish mortalities in the past, Farrell said, a phenomenon that has increased in B.C. over the past 30 years.

During a severe drought in 2009, Cameron was working in the Thompson Cariboo region and witnessed mass die-offs of fish in all of the streams being monitored in the area. 

Reining in water use

That drought prompted changes to B.C.’s Water Act. The province’s new Water Sustainability Act is expected to be in effect by 2016. Before the new act, B.C. had no legislation setting out the provincial government’s response to severe water scarcity. The province will certainly experience droughts in the future: the long-term prediction for B.C. calls for warmer, wetter winters and hotter, drier summers.

Currently, the most senior water licence holders take precedence over newer licence holders. But in the future when droughts occur, the new act will allow all water licence holders to take 250 litres a day for household needs and also protect water flows for fish. 

Existing water licences will be reviewed every 30 years to make sure licence holders still require the full volume and have water conservation measures in place, although the reviews won’t start until 2046.


The act will also require a licence for groundwater extraction, something that currently isn’t required in B.C. That’s been a key water management gap for the province, since groundwater and surface water are linked. 

Snowpack levels across the province are at very low levels because of a warm winter and early melt | BC River Forecast Centre

“In drought in the past what’s happened is we haven’t been able to license some streams,” Cameron said. “What they’ll do is say, ‘Well, I’ll build a well, then,’ and just a few metres away from a stream, they’ll sink a well. It draws down the water table so the stream is impacted.”


The Other Article & Map that I want to have you see and compare with. Locate "Fort St John" and "Prince George" in red color.

My question is simple. Where do we expect water to flow through, if there is not sufficient amount of water?

The proposed Site C project is located in northeast British Columbia, seven kilometres southwest of Fort St. John. The coordinates are: 56N, 12', 4.59" Latitude, 120W, 54', 21.76" Longitude (The map on this post can't be displayed in line)