Water levels on Lake Kagawong remain unusually stable compared to previous years

KAGAWONG – For the first time in awhile, this past year saw Lake Kagawong maintain standard levels. 

“Yes, this year we never hit the bottom limit of the rule curve,” Billings Councillor Bryan Barker, chair of the Lake Kagawong Resources Committee (LKRC), told the Recorder following a council meeting last week. “We probably had more of a normal year in terms of rainfall this year. As we all know, the last few years have provided a relatively dry summer and the levels have adjusted more because of this.” 

“So the water levels were pretty good this year, they spiked a couple of times but were pretty good,” said Councillor Barker.

Councillor Barker told council at its meeting last week the LKRC met in person on October 13 using the same format as before COVID-19. There was a report provided on the lake levels and that report indicated water levels on Lake Kagawong were within standards. 

“We reviewed our terms of reference,” said Councillor Barker “and we set some goals for 2021.” Some of the goals suggested were to follow up on OEC’s commitment in installing gauges on Lake Kagawong and that we could assist in finding a suitable location.”

Councillor Barker pointed out the Standing Advisory Committee (SAC) meeting, “had originally been scheduled for June, but due to COVID-19 the meeting had been delayed. The committee felt that we need to keep this on the radar and perhaps we could arrange a virtual meeting, and if time permits we would like to have the meeting before the end of the year.”

“We are also looking at holding a public forum to assist the community to have a better understanding of the relationship with OEC and Lake Kagawong water levels and the factors that affect Lake Kagawong water levels,” continued Councillor Barker. “I think this would be a good idea.” 

He said the group reviewed and assessment of the 2020 committee. “Each member had an opportunity to comment on the effectiveness and value of the committee. The consensus was that the committee has accomplished much since its inception.” He pointed out the committee has assisted in opening communications and rebuilding a good working relationship with the province; assisted in re-establishing the SAC meetings, of which Billings Township has taken the lead by chairing the committee; gathering data and monitoring lake levels of Lake Kagawong; gathering data on flow levels at the dam; and having a better understanding and working knowledge of the water management plan and how it applies to hydro generation and Lake Kagawong water levels.

“There was a unanimous agreement that the committee is a valued asset to the township and should continue for 2021,” added Councillor Barker.