This has caused flows at the monitoring stations on the Jock and Rideau Rivers to exceed the historical average after each rain event. However, these flows have not been sustained because, while flows have increased in the upper part of the watershed, there has only been enough to cause minor flows that have reconnected some of the pools that were left as the waters declined. The reservoir lake levels increased but only a matter of centimetres and that will be short-lived as the overall decline continues.
Along with limited stream response, people are still experiencing difficulties with their wells. There are trees exhibiting fall-like colours. There is still concern for fish and other aquatic creatures. These factors have prompted the Rideau Valley Water Response Team to continue with the “Severe” Drought status for the present. All watershed residents are encouraged to continue their efforts to conserve water.
The next meeting of the Water Response Team is planned for on or about September 1. The drought status will be reviewed and amended as appropriate relative to the conditions at that time.
Relevant information sources are as follows:
- Ministry of Environment and Climate Change: https://www.ontario.ca/page/managing-your-water-well-times-water-shortage
- Ontario’s Low Water Response program: https://www.ontario.ca/page/low-water-response-program.
- RVCA website: http://www.rvca.ca
- Hourly and daily streamflows and water levels: http://his.rvca.ca/rvcafwl/
In order that we can track impacts of the drought conditions in the watershed, we request that any individuals or businesses in the Rideau Watershed who may be experiencing difficulties with their wells please contact the Conservation Authority by calling 613-692-3571 or 1-800-267-3504, ext. 1128 or by email (instructions at http://www.rvca.ca/low_water/index.html).
Conservation Authority staff continue to monitor conditions and communicate with water managers throughout the watershed through the Rideau Valley Low Water Response Team. An update to this message will be issued as conditions warrant.
The Drought indicators are:
Minor: 80% to 60% of long-term average precipitation for 540 day and/or 90 day precipitation totals and/or 7-day average streamflows less than the 5 year return period low flow. This category reflects concern.
Moderate: 60% to 40% of long-term average precipitation for 540, 90 and/or 30 day precipitation totals and/or 7-day average streamflows less than the 10 year return period low flow. This category suggests a potentially serious problem is pending.
Severe: less than 40% of long-term average precipitation for 540, 90 and/or 30 day precipitation totals and/or 7-day average streamflows less than the 10 year return period low flow. This category indicates a failure of the water supply to meet demand.