Powerboating on Kalamalka and Wood lakes may fall under stricter regulations in the future to address water quality and environmental impact concerns. Image Credit: Contributed

Damage from powerboating

Recreation boating use of Kalamalka and Wood lakes focus of study.

There is no water treatment solution to dangerously high bacterial and chemical contaminants near water intake sites for Kalamalka and Wood lakes.

Lake Country council were told Tuesday of the need to focus on boating activity in the lakes and focus on implementing measures to reduce recreational water use impact.

“We’re not talking here about the need to ban boats from the lakes, but to better educate lake recreational users to minimize the environmental impact,” said Heather Larratt, a water quality expert who contributed to the environment impact study along with consultant Jason Schleppe.

Some of the options suggested in their study included boat wake sediment disturbance warning signage, creating no-wake zones and designated boat commuter corridors.

But the study was focused on water quality assessment and creating a detailed contour and sediment indexing of the two lakes, and not implementation of recreational use policies.

The key areas for powerboat overcrowding occur in the shallower north and south ends of Kalamalka Lake and along the north section of Wood Lake near the Oyama canal.

In those sensitive areas, the study detected sediment bacterial, hydrocarbon and metal contaminants that exceeded water quality guidelines.

Those contaminants were sourced both being released during sediment disruption and from chemical spills, most frequently occurring during boat refueling, cleaning or disposal of waste.

Schleppe spoke in favour of the need for the various municipal jurisdictions bordering on the two lakes to form a committee and implement joint strategies to address the environmental and water quality concerns cited in their study.

“When it comes to regulation you would be dealing with Transport Canada so I know you will have more power in approaching them if you speak as one multi-jurisdiction rather than each community taking their own positions,” Schleppe said.

Lake Country council approved a staff recommendation to pursue establishing an implementation committee to investigate the issue further and devise strategy recommendations.

Several councillors complemented Larratt and Schleppe on their study findings and the need to have a regional approach to recreational use initiatives for the two lakes.

“I think the other thing to consider as well are the private water intakes and how they might be affected,” said Coun. Penny Gambell.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Smoke rising from Okanagan Mountain Park hills

Lightning may have sparked a fire in the hills across from Peachland

Lightning strikes across B.C. Interior

Residents are being asked to go inside until last rumble of thunder

Update: Lightning sparks blaze above Summerland

Firefighters are battling the small fire from the area that occurred Tuesday shortly after 7 p.m.

UPDATE: Crews battle wildfire near Big White Road

Joe Rich Fire Department responding alongside Big White Fire Department and provincial crews.

Lovesick cabaret hopes to captivate Kelowna

The one night only show is on Thursday

Trudeau asks transport minister to tackle Greyhound’s western pullout

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s asked Transport Minister Marc Garneau to find solutions in Greyhound Canada’s absence.

Lightning sparks wildfires in Vernon

Tuesday night storm causes wildfire in BX and residential fire in East Hill

Crash closes Highway 5A in both directions

A collision has shut down Highway 5A about 22 kilometres south of the junction with Highway 97C

Hub for mental health and addictions treatment opens at B.C. hospital

St. Paul’s Hospital HUB is an acute medical unit that includes 10 patient beds

Pike Mountain fire continues to grow – quadruples in 24 hours

Fire threatens area consumed in 2017 by a 3,500 hectare blaze

Vernon Knights hire Van Horlick

New head coach of Junior B franchise in Armstrong

St. Albert knocks down Canadians

Finals of Valley of the Champions

Restaurant Brands International to review policy over poaching employees

One of Canada’s largest fast-food company to review ‘no-poach’ franchise agreements

Calgary family’s vacation ends in tragedy on Texas highway

Three people died and four others were injured in the crash

Most Read