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Monthly Board Report - January 2001
Groundwater Resources Being Studied
Submitted by Henry Garcia, Director of the Health Protection Department
The United Counties of Leeds and Grenville is presently conducting a comprehensive study of groundwater resources within its geographical boundaries. The first of three reports from this study has recently been completed and submitted, in draft, to the study's Steering Committee and to the Technical Advisory Committee. The Health Unit actively participates at both of these committees and has made available to the study group pertinent drinking water data from our records.
The first report, entitled "Part 1- Water Resource Assessment", has been compiled by Dillon Consulting Limited. This report identifies the geological, topographical and hydrogeological composition of United Counties, as well as many other features of the region that directly or indirectly impact on this very precious and environmentally sensitive resource. This report assesses the likelihood of ground water aquifer contamination and the potential impact that any local contaminant may have on surrounding drinking water wells. The report also identifies 23,000 drinking water wells within the County's boundaries and identifies well locations that are vulnerable to contamination.
The second report, the “Groundwater Contaminant Assessment, has been completed in late December 2000. The third and fourth reports, entitled "Existing Use Assessment" and "Economic Evaluation, Groundwater Management and Protection Measures" respectively, will be completed early in 2001.
These reports will be of great benefit to the Health Unit as well as to municipal planners and public policy makers in identifying areas where groundwater contamination is now occurring or has occurred in the past. They will provide excellent background data, which will facilitate better decision making with regard to future municipal planning and development within the United Counties.
A key feature of this groundwater study is that it is intended to lead to the development of a Geographical Information System (GIS). The data in this GIS will be presented on maps that will allow for updates in the future.