In November 2017, POLIS released the recommendations report From Crisis to Solutions: Towards Better Source Water Protection and Nutrient Management in the Hullcar Valley. It was commissioned as part of a provincial review ordered by the Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy to improve management and decision-making related to source water protection and agricultural nutrients in B.C.’s Hullcar aquifer. POLIS’ Oliver M. Brandes led this aspect of the provincial review with an advisory committee, and the recommendations report was released by POLIS.
Residents in the Hullcar Valley have been on a Water Quality Advisory due to elevated nitrate concentrations in the aquifer since 2014.
In November 2018, one year after the POLIS report was released, the Province published the Hullcar (Clcahl) Aquifer Response Plan Report, which summarizes government’s response to the 90 recommendations put forward by POLIS.
These 90 recommendations focus on nine key themes with the goals of: improving the soil nitrate balance; restoring the aquifer to acceptable nitrate levels in the Hullcar valley; and improving regulatory mechanisms to help prevent a similar situation from occurring in other drinking water aquifers in B.C.
Of the 90 recommendations, the provincial government has implemented or undertaken 32 and is currently actioning another 34. There are future actions to implement another 14 and a further 10 recommendations will be implemented in alternative methods.
Water crises like Hullcar need stronger government leadership (Vernon Morning Star, Sept 2018), op-ed by Al Price, founder of Save Hullcar Aquifer Team (SHAT) and Kukpi7 Christian, Chief of the Splatsin: