By Trevor Busch
Sunny South News
Drought conditions have pervaded the prairies throughout 2023, and as reservoirs were drawn down and watersheds reduced to a proverbial trickle, several local municipalities have warned residents to reduce or limit their consumption.
Last month, the St. Mary River Irrigation District (SMRID) shut down water delivery several weeks ahead of schedule to help conserve water for the region and ensure there will be enough supply for communities that rely on the SMRID’s water, like Taber and Coaldale.
Taber-Warner MLA Grant Hunter is confident there is no risk the taps will run dry this fall-winter as the region progresses into colder weather.
“I am confident. I’ve had some good conversations, Agriculture and Irrigation ministries, and also with Environment and Protected Areas. And they’ve assured me that they will be making sure that the water is for domestic use, what we need.”
Reservoirs that feed the SMRID did not start out at full capacity in 2023, which contributed to supply issues later in the year.
In early September, SMRID’s David Westwood had reported current water storage in the district’s system stood at just 25 per cent.