Along with all other Metro Vancouver municipalities, Burnaby is activating Stage 2 of its Drinking Water Conservation Plan (DWCP), effective August 4, 2023. Stage 2 water restrictions mean that all residential and non-residential lawn watering and watering of grass boulevards is prohibited. Additional restrictions under Stage 2 include:
- No topping up or filling of aesthetic water features (like fountains and ponds).
- No washing of impermeable/hard surfaces (such as driveways and sidewalks) unless it’s for a health or safety reason, or to prepare a surface for painting or similar treatment.
- No new permits will be issued for watering new lawns, or lawns being treated for the European Chafer Beetle. Permits issued in Stage 1 remain in effect until they expire.
- Reduction of the watering of some playing fields and golf courses.
The decision to activate Stage 2 is being made based on careful consideration of several factors, including:
- Warm, dry weather. The rain on Monday, July 24, 2023 and Tuesday, July 25, 2023 provided some temporary relief to our region in terms of reducing fire risk and the potential to reduce outdoor water use; however, the rain did not contribute to an increase to the levels of the reservoirs. The majority of the rainfall was absorbed by the ground and vegetation.
- Dry forecast for the rest of summer. The seasonal weather forecast is projecting a high likelihood of continued drought for the rest of summer, and moving to Stage 2 aligns with the Province’s recommendations to prepare for a dry fall.
- Higher-than-normal demand for water. The Metro Vancouver region has been in Stage 1 for 12 weeks, and the demand for water has stayed consistently high. Acting now to implement stricter watering restrictions offers us the best opportunity to save water effectively and protect our ecosystem and fish populations.
Director, Policy Planning and Analysis, Water Services, Metro Vancouver