SKIP TO CONTENT  
 
VIEW THE
ELK
VALLEY
HERALD
December 4th, 2013 ~ Vol. 83 No. 47
$1.00
 
 
HOME
CLASSIFIEDS
WEATHER
EVENTS
RCMP STATS
WORLD NEWS
CANADA NEWS
ALTERNATIVE
CONTACT US
ARCHIVES
SUBSCRIPTIONS
STORY IDEA,
COMMENT,
OR NEWS TIP?
The importance of headwaters
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
stock Photo
DIEGO SYZ
Pass Herald Staff
Conservationist, author, hunter and former superintendent of Banff National Park Kevin Van Tighem explores the importance of the Crowsnest Pass area headwaters in light of the coming finalization of the draft South Saskatchewan Regional Plan.

The plan is a Government of Alberta initiative to make sure Alberta will be well positioned for the emerging challenges of the future.

“It applies to the entire South Saskatchewan river system, including all the Oldman and Crowsnest rivers,” said Van Tighem.

“All the problems that face the South Saskatchewan region are evident in the Crowsnest Pass. We are all in this together so we all need to make sure the government gets the plan right.”

Formal public and stakeholder consultations for the draft SSRP ended on November 28th, said Duncan MacDonnell, public affairs consultant for Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development.

There is a workbook online, you can complete and submit to get your voice in to the Provincial Government who is considering feedback draft SSRP to help finalize the plan, he said.

“The SSRP will address major issues affecting the Crowsnest Pass region such as; loss of biological diversity, building economic prosperity, loss of rural spaces to development as cities expand, and water security,” he said.

“Currently there is no more water available to be licensed, it’s all been allocated – and our region’s population is expected to double in the next 25 years.”

“Headwater valleys are like reservoirs. If they are in good shape, they can hold a lot of water and release it gradually to downstream users.”


“If they are in bad shape, they won’t hold as much water, which means it will run through quickly. Because of this unhealthy headwaters produce spring floods and then reduced summer stream flows; the water runs out too fast and too early each year,” he said.

Human activities like logging and recreation also are infringing upon the area’s headwaters.

”Everybody wants to do everything everywhere, and too few people seriously take into account the places where they want to clear cut, mud-bog, build roads and resorts, trap beavers, etc. The headwaters are the only places in the entire South Saskatchewan region that yield water for all downstream water users, not to mention the fish and wildlife that rely on those streams. Everything we do makes the headwaters healthier or worse off, but too few of us take seriously the responsibility that is put on us,” said Van Tighem.

“When groups like the Quad Squad build bridges to keep off-road vehicles from damaging creek banks, or when ranchers build check dams on coulees or change their grazing plans to keep cattle off stream-banks and wetlands during sensitive seasons, this protects the headwaters,” said Van Tighem.

For more information on the draft SSRP or to find the workbook to get your say in on the finalization process please visit the website www.landuse.ab.ca.
HOME PAGE
 
 
news@passherald.ca
403-562-2248
$1.00
December 4th, 2013 ~ Vol. 83 No. 47
All information on this website is Copyright (c) 2013 Pass Herald Ltd. All rights reserved.
12925 20th Ave, Box 960, Blairmore, Alberta, Canada T0K 0E0 | news@passherald.ca | 403.562.2248 | 403.562.8379 (FAX)
 
     
Image 01 Image 02 Image 03