Assessment slated for East Central water project

.

  • Jul. 13, 2011 12:00 p.m.

Potential environmental, social, health and economic implications to be examined

The Government of Alberta is beginning a voluntary three-year Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) process that will examine the potential diversion of water from the Red Deer River to the Special Areas region in East Central Alberta, as well as parts of the County of Stettler and the County of Paintearth.

“We are voluntarily conducting an EIA to ensure an open and accountable process,” said Minister of Municipal Affairs, Hector Goudreau. “Gathering the relevant information will help ensure a good decision is made on whether to proceed with the proposed project.”

“We’re talking about an area that gets very little annual rainfall,” explained Drumheller-Stettler MLA and Minister of Agriculture Jack Hayden to the Stettler Independent following the announcement.

“In some cases they’ve had some tough winters with respect to getting snow and run-off also. It’s an area that’s very rich in pasture. It’s perfect for the cattle, except for the water portion of it.”

Hayden went on to clarify that this type of remedial action has been envisaged “since the dirty thirties.” In fact, the “special areas” designation was attached in 1938.

The idea is to draw water from the Red Deer River during periods of maximum flow and store it in natural locations until needed.

Hayden described these locations as ideal in that they are geographic fault-type formations narrow and deep, that could efficiently store huge volumes of water with very minimal evaporation.

“It’s been a real challenge for people to have enough water to support the agricultural industry out there,” said the Minister by phone from New Brunswick where he had been taking part in government conferences.

On the topic of years the concept has been germinating, Hayden stated, “A lot of preliminary work has been done on it, and there was a point in time in which a project was approved in principle at the cabinet table, but of course there’s a lot of steps to take before anything can become a reality.”

The first step, Hayden referred to was the environmental impact study announced with the government press release.

The upcoming three-year effort is but Phase One of the study, to be followed by Phase Two which is expected to have a two-year duration.

Just Posted

Stetter P&H Elevator pancake breakfast runs May 26th

Highlights include a threshing and rope making demos and flour and bread making

Red Deer resident releases a set of inspiring new titles

Bev Burton excited to share her story via Create Your Calm Waters and Arise & Shine

National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day is May 18th

Alberta RCMP participates in Canada Road Safety Week during Victoria Day long weekend

‘Shop Stettler’ awareness campaign is underway

Promotional campaign runs through to June 8th

Unveil Studio’s new project, Dream, explores meaning and purpose

The episodic series, shot by Matt and Dan Kooman, consists of inspiring stories from around the world

UPDATE: B.C. pilot killed in Honduras plane crash

The crash happened in the Roatan Islands area, according to officials

Authorities warn out-of-control wildfire could cut northern Alberta town’s electricity

Alberta Transportation has closed Highway 35 south of High Level due to the fire

‘Rope-a-dope’: Environmentalists say Alberta war room threat won’t distract them

Those against Alberta Premier Jason Kenney aren’t worried about promise to fight critics of energy industry

Almost $13 million to be paid to Grande Prairie hospital subcontractors, others

No reasons for the Court of Queen’s Bench order were released

Canada’s parole officers say correctional system has reached breaking point

About half of Canada’s federal parole officers work inside penitentiaries and correctional institutions

Speed, alcohol considered factors in deadly Calgary crash: police

Two female passengers in the Corolla, aged 31 and 65, died at the scene

Montreal researchers create audible hockey puck for visually impaired players

Three years ago, Gilles Ouellet came up with the idea for a puck that makes a continuous sound

‘What’s your number?’: Advocates urge Canadians to check their blood pressure

May 17 is World Hypertension Day, marked to spread awareness on the risks of high blood pressure

National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day is May 18

Alberta RCMP participates in Canada Road Safety Week during Victoria Day long weekend

Most Read