The Mississippi-Rideau Drinking Water Source Protection (MRDWSP) staff will be meeting with land and business owners this summer in the communities of Almonte, Kemptville, Merrickville, Montague, Smiths Falls and Westport who may be using chemicals that could pose a risk to the municipal drinking water systems.The Mississippi-Rideau Drinking Water Source Protection (MRDWSP) staff will be meeting with land and business owners this summer in the communities of Almonte, Kemptville, Merrickville, Montague, Smiths Falls and Westport who may be using chemicals that could pose a risk to the municipal drinking water systems.
This work is being done by MRDWSP staff on behalf of the local municipalities as they strive to meet the requirements of the Ontario’s Clean Water Act. The locally produced and supported Source Water Protection Plan sets out ways to ensure long-term protection of municipal drinking water supplies. Drinking Water Protection Zones are outlined in the Mississippi-Rideau Source Protection Plan and are areas where the drinking water source is more vulnerable and as a result has special protection.
Certain activities that take place within these zones can pose a risk to the municipal drinking water supply. Chemicals known as dense non-aqueous phase liquids (DNAPLs) are heavier than water, meaning that they sink and do not dissolve in water. These chemicals are harmful to human health and are very difficult and expensive to clean up. DNAPLs may be present in dry cleaning chemicals, paints, paint strippers, degreasing and cleaning agents, lubricants and adhesives. If these chemicals are present, Mississippi-Rideau Staff will work with land and business owners to ensure that proper practices are established and recognized so that current activities do not pose a threat to the drinking water source.
MRDWSP staff will also endeavour to meet with municipal councils prior to starting their work in each of the six communities to outline provincial requirements and the value of these outreach projects to the long-term protection of local drinking water resources.
The Mississippi-Rideau Source Protection Region is made up of the Mississippi Valley and Rideau Valley watersheds. The Source Protection Committee and staff are supported by the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority and Rideau Valley Conservation Authority.
For more information about Mississippi-Rideau Source Water Protection and Drinking Water Protection Zones visit mrsourcewater.ca.
The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA) is excited to announce that over 275,000 trees were planted this spring. RVCA and partners are well on the way to planting 6.5 million trees by 2020!
RVCA’s private landowner tree planting program available throughout eastern Ontario, is the perfect way to get the direction, planting plan and any available incentive funding for reforesting projects. In cases where landowners plant over 2,000 trees, RVCA works with a number of partners (Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, City of Ottawa, Forests Ontario and local business) to keep costs as low as $0.15 per tree. Landowners with at least one acre of land who are willing to plant 500 or more trees are encouraged
to call 613-692-3571 or 1-800-267-3504 and speak with Forestry sta to book a site visit or get more information.
We have numerous community-minded partners who support our tree planting program and reduce landowner costs,” says Scott Danford, RVCA Forestry Program Manager. “Simply, we need enthusiastic landowners to partner and plant with throughout the Rideau watershed.”
Tree planting is one the most practical ways to take care of our watershed and the wider environment. Trees improve local biodiversity by providing shelter for birds and wildlife, while at the same time providing us with windbreaks, screening and shade. Forests act as a major lter and cleansing system for water that soaks into the ground and feeds our wells and underground water systems. The newly planted trees take a little tender loving care in their early years, but once they are “free-growing,” they provide all of these advantages for up to 80 years or more. Trees are vital for a healthy and sustainable future; start planning now for planting next spring.
Trees improve our land and air by acting as miniature environmental cleaning stations. Rootlets help hold the soil in place to protect against erosion and improve water retention. Leaves absorb CO2 and release oxygen helping to reduce the e ects of climate change. In one year, an acre of trees absorbs as much carbon as is produced by a car driven 14,000 kilometres. They also act like natural air conditioners; the evaporation from one tree has the same cooling e ects as 10 room size air conditioners working
20 hours a day.
In early July the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority, with the support of many partners, will take the first steps towards the restoration of the Hutton Creek Wetland. With the successful decommissioning of the Motts Mills Dam and its replacement with a new earthen berm water control structure, it is now time to turn activities towards restoring the wetland.
Once a popular location for hunting and other water activities, the Provincially Signi cant Wetland has slowly been choked out by massive cattail growth. Only 10 percent of the wetland remains as open water. As the open water area diminished so did the diversity of plants, habitat and wildlife. The cattail growth has not only seriously impacted the wetland’s diversity, but it has also a ected its ability to be enjoyed.
RVCA has been working collaboratively with landowners, Ducks Unlimited Canada, the Leeds-Grenville Stewardship Council, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, the Township of Elizabethtown-Kitley and a local steering committee to develop a strategy that will reduce cattail growth and restore diversity and open water in the wetland. The goal is to see the 300 hectares of wetland return to its greatest biological diversity and abundance of species as seen in the 1970s and 1980s. Ideally, the Hutton Creek Wetland would be a healthy 50/50 mix of open water and emergent vegetation.
Starting in early July, RVCA sta will lower water levels in the wetland by removing stop logs at the earthen berm. Lowering the water levels will allow the RVCA to study the wetland and determine the best way to address the overgrowth of cattails. The drawdown is expected to last for a minimum of three years.
RVCA will also be monitoring upstream and downstream water levels over this rst phase.
Thank you to local landowners for their cooperation and involvement in this project and to representatives on the local steering committee who have worked successfully to bring landowners, agencies and funders together to move this project forward.
Recent high waters have caused erosion damage and damage to shoreline structures, particularly east of Cumberland along the Ottawa River and in the upper reaches (Tay Valley Watershed) of the Rideau Valley Watershed.
The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA) recognizes that some of the remedies for damage may need more than just a minor “tweak.”
This is a reminder to all landowners to check with your local Conservation Authority to see if approval is required prior to doing any “clean-up” work along your shoreline (e.g., shoreline stabilization or repair to shore works, erosion control, dock construction, etc.). There are also restrictions to when you can undertake in-water work and possibly other approval agencies that require consulting depending on where you are in the watershed (e.g., Parks Canada and Ministry of Natural Resources and Forests).
The best thing to do is contact your local Conservation Authority to see if there are any restrictions or approval requirements. In the Rideau Watershed, call the RVCA’s Resource Specialists at 613-692-3571 or 1-800-267-3504 ext. 1128 and 1132. You can also visit the RVCA website at www.rvca.ca and look for the “After the Flood” link. Be sure to read the document entitled Guidelines for Shore Works in the Rideau Valley Watershed to help you with your project. In cases of severe erosion, funding may be available through Rural Clean Water Grants. RVCA Resource Specialists can guide you towards next steps required to make application to receive funding. Information on these grants is also available on the RVCA website.
The riparian zone (the area along the shores of our creeks, rivers and lakes) is an important area for wildlife and water quality. Trees and shrubs along the riparian zone provide a vegetative bu er that provides shelter and food for wildlife while intercepting upland nutrients. Trees and shrubs also provide valuable erosion protection. They are extremely resilient. Don’t be too quick to remove shoreline plants. Instead, give damaged plants the opportunity to respond with natural regrowth. Corrective pruning may suffice. If you are interested in naturalizing your shoreline, contact the RVCA for details on their Shoreline Naturalization Program or visit the website.
Waterfront property owners will want to remove any fallen branches and debris from their shoreline to ensure the unaltered and uninterrupted ow of water. Be sure not to dispose of garbage, debris or sandbags in the river. Check with your local municipality for local disposal options.
The Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation (RVCF) is pleased to announce that it has been accredited under Imagine Canada’s national Standards Program. With this achievement, RVCF joins a growing community of organizations dedicated to operational excellence. Just over 220 out of the more than 85,000 registered charities in Canada have earned the accreditation.
Designed to strengthen public confidence in the charitable and non-profit sector, the program sets rigorous criteria that require organizations to demonstrate excellence in board governance, financial accountability and transparency, ethical fundraising, staff management and volunteer involvement.
RVCF engaged in a two-year accreditation process and clearly demonstrated that its policy and procedures are transparent and thorough — meeting Imagine Canada’s country-wide set of shared standards.
“We are extremely proud of this achievement,” said Jason Kelly, RVCF Chair. “It is a strict and uncompromising process, but one that builds public trust and provides our supporters confidence in our charitable work. Our board and staff are committed to meeting the highest standards of trust.”
The Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation is a registered environmental charity working to help protect and conserve the lands and waters of the valley of the Rideau River in Eastern Ontario. The Conservation Foundation builds partnerships and seeks new individuals, corporations and groups wanting to get involved in the vital work of taking care of our own natural environment.
“It’s no small feat for an organization to earn Standards Program accreditation,” says Bruce MacDonald, President and CEO of Imagine Canada. “It’s a rigorous, peer-reviewed process that is meant to build public trust and confidence in the charitable sector. These organizations take accountability and operational transparency very seriously. We’re glad to have them on board.”
Imagine Canada is a national charitable organization whose cause is Canada’s charities. Their three broad goals are to strengthen the sector’s collective voice, create opportunities to connect and learn from each other and build the sector’s capacity to succeed.