It would surely be nice if the City saw all water taking permits as impacting with equally compelling zeal, but I digress.
Seriously, this actually might be worse than the whole Nestle situation. Think about the location - Wellington and the Hanlon - and what runs past there. Also, this news that Dolime wants to take more water comes with especially bad timing with recent reports that the Great Lakes are at near historic low water levels, and this just in, but the Speed River is part of the system that feeds into the Great Lakes.
Perhaps emboldened by the defeat of the Melancthon "mega"-quarry near Orangeville, the City feels that they have a good chance to get a stay. I hope so. Water is far too precious a resource, and I'm not yet sure people realize just how precious.
Here's the press release:
GUELPH, ON, February 4, 2013 – The City of Guelph will seek leave to appeal River Valley Developments Inc.'s latest amended permit to take water, as posted on the Environmental Registry by the Ministry of Environment on January 28. City Council directed staff to proceed with the leave to appeal at its meeting this evening.
The City has long maintained that River Valley Developments Inc.'s excavation and water-taking at its Dolime quarry—located at Wellington Road and the Hanlon Expressway—has the potential to impact the quality and quantity of Guelph's municipal water supply system, now or in the future.
The City has been clear in its concerns regarding the amended permit. Concerns are based on the fact that increased pumping above historical levels at the quarry will impact water quantity available at some of the City's municipal wells. The City is calling for a limit at the current pumping rate; a long-term management plan for the quarry; an effective monitoring program; and financial assurances to ensure the quarry owner—rather than Guelph ratepayers—pay for long-term mitigation costs related to its operation.
Under the Environmental Bill of Rights the City has 15 days within which it can notify the Environmental Review Tribunal of Ontario of its intent to seek leave to appeal. If the leave application is successful, the City will be granted the right to participate in a hearing on the matter.
To read the staff report, click here. The report begins on page 83.