Project Highlights

Kerr Wood Leidal (KWL) was retained by the Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD) in 2009 to complete part of its regional water supply strategy, which included reviewing current water supplies and assessing the impact of future water consumption and climate change on the existing supply sources. Ten alternate water supplies, including groundwater, were identified and evaluated for capacity and vulnerability to climate change and contamination.

The existing water treatment systems were assessed based on the regulatory standards and guidelines for drinking water quality and the Vancouver Island Health Authorities 4-3-2-1 criteria. Alternate water treatment options were evaluated for the existing and proposed water sources, and recommendations were made regarding source water protection.

Climate Change Impacts on Waterborne Diseases

KWL completed a literature review of the impact of climate change on public health risks due to waterborne diseases. The key findings were that climate change will result in warmer temperatures and heavier rainfall events in the Comox area, possibly resulting in an increase in the presence of waterborne pathogens and/or reduction in the effectiveness of water treatment processes.

Water User Profiles

KWL reviewed existing water demands and disaggregated them by customer type and use for each service area. The disaggregated demands were used to estimate future demands and to evaluate various water supply options. KWL also identified the potential for reducing water use through water conservation strategies and utilization of non-potable water sources.

Regional Water Supply Options

Several local and regional supply options for the CVRD were developed in consultation with the various stakeholders. Throughout the development of the regional water supply strategy, meetings were held with representatives from local governments, provincial and federal governments, the Vancouver Island Health Authority and First Nations. Comments from all stakeholders were incorporated into the final strategy.