B.C. government is taking steps to protect groundwater

BY MURRAY COELL, VANCOUVER SUN DECEMBER 7, 2010

Re: ‘Urgent action’ needed to protect B.C.’s groundwater, Dec. 3

It’s important for British Columbians to know that — as the auditor-general himself noted in his report — our government is already taking steps to address his key recommendations on protecting B.C.’s precious groundwater resources.

We are reviewing the groundwater program and modernizing the Water Act, which is B.C.’s primary law for managing our water resources. We are also improving well standards and requirements for submitting well records.

In fact, we are also the first government in B.C. history to implement a $14-million comprehensive drinking water-protection plan to improve water management and enhance water-quality testing, and we’re investing $80 million in almost 90 drinking and waste-water infrastructure projects under the BC Community Water Improvement Program.

The B.C. government is committed to Water Act modernization and we intend to meet our goal of modernizing the Water Act by 2012.

We launched the Living Water Smart blog in December 2009, released a discussion paper in February 2010, and delivered a dozen workshops around the province during March and April.

One of the most valuable contributions of the auditor-general’s report is that it contains important information about the significance of groundwater resources. It serves to support efforts to advance the protection of this valuable natural asset.

Murray Coell

B.C. Minister of Environment

© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun

Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/opinion/government+taking+steps+protect+groundwater/3937936/story.html#ixzz17UzapCGN

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