In this Water Region, the Area F Official Community Plan (OCP) covers the community of Errington. It outlines the broad objectives and policies that represent the form and character of the existing and proposed land use in the area. Priorities include protecting the natural environment and green space, managing growth and protecting the area's rural integrity.
In this Water Region, the Area G Official Community Plan (OCP) covers the communities of San Pareil and the Englishman River Estates. It outlines the broad objectives and policies that represent the form and character of the existing and proposed land use in the area. Priorities include protecting the natural environment and green space, managing growth and protecting the area's rural integrity.
The Official Community Plan (OCP) for Parksville expresses how the community sees itself now and in years to come, and provides a road map to reach those aspirations. Through reflecting the community?s desires, this Plan is a guiding policy document which assists Council in setting the direction and making decisions in relation to planning and land use management.
Report - Integrating the Site with the Watershed 2012
In the Volume 22, Number 2, Autumn 2015 edition of Stream Talk magazine, the Englishman River was profiled for its successful restoration of salmon runs, thanks to a side channel constructed in the Englishman River Regional Park. This project was led by the T. Buck Suzuki Environmental Foundation among other partners. See extracted article, at the link above.
Water purveyors in this region use the BC Water Use Reporting Centre, a secure online tool, to track, record and report on water use. This project is a partnership between the RDN, the Province and the Okanagan Basin Water Board (who have helped develop this tool).
Englishman River Water Service - New Intake & Treatment Plant
The Englishman River Water Service (ERWS) is planning to expand the joint venture (Parksville and RDN-Nanoose) drinking water supply system with a new surface water intake and water treatment plant along the Englishman River and water main upgrades and installation of new water supply lines. This is required to ensure that an adequate volume of bulk water can be provided, year round, and that the water meets today's standards for good quality drinking water.
Mt Arrowsmith - Automated Snowpillow / Weather Station
This station monitors snowdepth, precipitation and other weather related indicators at 1464m on Mt Arrowsmith. It has been up and running since January 2017. This station is a part of the Provincial Snow Program network of monitoring stations, and was made possible thanks to the following partners:
Vancouver Island University
Ministry of Environment
Ministry of Forests Lands and Natural Resource Operations
Arrowsmith Water Service (RDN, City of Parksville, Town of Qualicum Beach)
Part of the RDN Community Watershed Monitoring Network, monitored by Mid Vancouver Island Habitat Enhancement Society. There are two sites on Shelly Creek - the upper one at Hamilton Rd. and the lower one at Blower Rd.
Upper Englishman River - Water Quality Monitoring Site
This study was completed for Mid Vancouver Island Habitat Enhancement Society with support from the RDN DWWP program. It gives an overview of the stream channel and hydrologic characteristics of Shelly Creek, and gives supporting information for enhancement recommendations.
Report - Lower Englishman River Watershed Wetland Study (2015)
Prepared for Mid Vancouver Island Habitat Enhancement Society by Christopher M. Stephens - this report provides a baseline assessment of key wetlands in the lower Englishman R watershed.
Kixwemolh - Englishman River
What is now called the Englishman River was known as "the place of lots of steelhead" in three languages. There was no large village site near the mouth of the river, but the river itself still holds much spiritual significance for First Nations people.
The RDN DWWP program, with Island Timberlands and TimberWest, offer a full-day field trip for grades 4 & 5 in School District 69, to take students to see where their drinking water comes from. The first part of the trip is in the upper Englishman River watershed, with the second stop being the RDN Englishman River Regional Park in the lower watershed.
The Englishman River flows in an easterly direction from Mount Arrowsmith at 1819 m above sea level and discharges into the Strait of Georgia, north of Craig Bay. The main Englishman and South Englishman rivers originate in Arrowsmith, Hidden and Fishtail lakes.
Th total drainage area is approximately 324 sq. km.
The watershed includes parts of Electoral Areas F and G and the City of Parksville.
The drinking water supply for the City of Parksville comes from the Englishman River (Englishman River Water Service) in the summer time, and from groundwater wells year-round.
The areas outside the municipality of Parksville in this Water Region rely solely on groundwater coming from the area's aquifers. Many residents supply their own water from private wells (indicated by the pink dots on the map).The RDN wellSMART program provides information on private wells.
The RDN operates two water systems in this Water Region:
San Pareil, which supplies groundwater from the lower Englishman River aquifer.
Englishman River water service area supplies the community of River's Edge with groundwater.
Education and networking opportunities exist for smaller water system operators, such as mobile home parks, restaurants, campsites, gas stations etc. The Water Purveyor Working Group meets annually, click here for details.
Team WaterSmart has information on what you can do to conserve and protect our water supply.
In this water region, there are bedrock aquifers and sand and gravel aquifers. This includes provincially mapped aquifers 220 (bedrock) and 209, 216, 219, 221 (sand and gravel).
Study of the groundwater-surface water interaction of the bedrock aquifer (#220) that intercepts the Englishman River is being done in partnership with GW Solutions Hydrogeolgists, Mid Vancouver Island Habitat Enhancement Society with the support of the DWWP program. See more about that study here.
Further study on the aquifers in this region was accomplished through a partnership with Natural Resource Canada / Geological Survey of Canada who completed the Nanaimo Lowlands Aquifer Characterization project between 2010 - 2015. Three-dimensional modelling of the aquifers was done for the area between Deep Bay and Nanoose.
This water region includes the Englishman River, including its tributaries: South Englishman River, Moriarty Creek, Morison Creek, Swane Creek - as well as the neighbouring smaller watershed of Shelly Creek - which all drain into the Salish Sea at the Strait of Georgia. Arrowsmith Lake is the headwaters of the Englishman River, and has a dam that aids in storing water for the summer period for Parksville & Nanoose drinking water and fish flows.
Englishman River has been designated by the Ministry of Environment as a 'Sensitive Stream' that requires special management attention, under the Fisheries Protection Act, because of risk to fish populations due to inadequate water flows and other habitat concerns. It is also designated a Community Watershed because it supplies residents with drinking water. This watershed is extremely important for many different species of fish, including Steelhead, Cutthroat trout, Coho, Chinook, Chum and Pink salmon.
The RDN Phase 1 Water Budget Study (2013) looked at supply and demand on surface water resources in Water Region 4, based on available data.
First Nations Significance
This water region is within the traditional territories of the Nanoose First Nation and the Qualicum First Nation. This area is rich with cultural significance and the waters and lands are closely connected with First Nations peoples and their ancestors.
There were six Salish languages (Hul'qami'num, Snuneymuxqun, Sqo'mish, she shashishalhem, Tla'amin, Comox, and Pentlatch) spoken traditionally in the RDN. In addition, Nuu chah Nulth, Kwakwala, and Sencothen languages would also bump up against the boundaries of the district. And Chinook was also used as a trading language.
Each piece of land is known by different families, communities, First Nations, dialects and languages by similar and dissimilar names. The land belongs to the name. The name does not belong to the land. In this way, there is more than one "Qualicum", for example: one near Port Renfrew and one also near Bellingham.
We have recorded here (in partnership with School District 69) as many names as we have been able to find. We recognize that more names are out there, and we are always happy to include them if you are open to sharing with us. Email creid [at] sd69.bc.ca
Traditional ecological knowledge is vital to understanding our watersheds and their health.
Rebate programs are available for residents across the region to conserve and protect water. Currently being offered are:
The RDN's Team WaterSmart offers education and outreach programs across the region. They provide activities and resources on water conservation indoors and outdoors, water quality protection, and ecological values.