State of emergency declared in Iqaluit due to water shortage

The City will thus be able to begin pumping water from Lac Sans Nom, or Lac Qikiqtalik in Inuktitut, in order to fill the main reservoir before frost sets in.

Lake Geraldine, which feeds into Iqaluit, sits above the town near the power plant.

Photo: Radio-Canada / Matisse Harvey

City executive director and emergency management coordinator Amy Elgersma told city council Friday that nearly 413,000 cubic meters of water must be pumped into the reservoir to meet water needs for the entire season. winter, which is more than double what the reservoir currently contains.

The deputy mayor, Solomon Awa, asked the latter if the lake could meet the water needs of the Municipality, to which she replied that it had the volume necessary to fill the reservoir, which studies also confirmed. . The City estimates that it will have to pump more than 500 million liters of water.

The city councilor Kyle Sheppard expressed concern about the infrastructure’s capacity to pump such a large volume of water in a short period of time. The City has only two months to pump the necessary volume of water. Amy Elgersma said the infrastructure in place has the capacity to fill the reservoir in just 40 days, or less if the city receives significant rainfall.

Pumps have already been installed at Lac Sans Nom, from where the water will be routed to the Apex River, which is already connected to the reservoir.

Residents of Iqaluit had been under orders to conserve drinking water since May. However, the Municipality has been facing water shortages since 2018.

In April, the federal government announced an investment of $214 million to build a new water reservoir system.

The city councilor Kyle Sheppard recalled that the situation showed how important it was to inform the public of the urgency of the situation. He added that the latter had become accustomed to the same messages and was unaware of the seriousness of the situation.

We really need to conserve water and raise awareness of the importance of this measuredid he declare.

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