Okanagan Water Board opens floodgates with call for grant applications

Water Conservation and Quality Improvement program open from Armstrong to Osoyoos

There’s even more funding to draw from the well for Okanagan communities with water projects.

The Okanagan Basin Water Board is now accepting applications to its Water Conservation and Quality Improvement grant program. New this year, the board recently approved a $50,000 increase in funding, bringing the total amount available to $350,000 for 2020.

“We’re very happy to enhance funding for this program,” said Sue McKortoff, OBWB chair and mayor of Osoyoos. “Anything we can do to support the quality and quantity of water in our valley will be key as our population continues to grow, and as we see the impacts of climate change in what is already a water-stressed region. Ensuring we are taking care of our water for the future is critical,” she added, noting that past WCQI-funded projects have shown great success in helping address these issues.

“From Armstrong in the north to Osoyoos in the south, this program has helped to enhance our quality of life, which depends on a clean, sufficient water supply, and healthy lakes,” McKortoff said.

This is the first increase in WCQI grant funding since the program began in 2006 and is intended to help cover inflation, recognizing that project costs have gone up. Successful applicants can receive between $3,000 and $30,000 if they meet the program criteria.

“This year our main focus is on encouraging collaborative projects that provide water benefits in large areas throughout the valley,” said James Littley, operations and grants manager. “Projects that are partnerships between different organizations and span multiple jurisdictions are more likely to receive funding.”

Full scoring criteria can be found in the Program Guide on the OBWB website. Local governments, First Nations, irrigation districts and non-profit organizations are eligible to apply for the grants for projects which occur within the Okanagan Basin.

Project areas that will be considered include: drought and flood preparedness, education, irrigation, groundwater studies, mapping, metering, source water protection, system improvement, water treatment studies, water management planning, water quality assessments, WaterWise landscaping, water flow monitoring, and restoration.

Since 2006, the WCQI program has provided more than $4.4 million to more than 265 projects.

This year’s application deadline is Feb. 28, 2020, 4 p.m. The complete Program Guide, detailed information about program changes, and application forms can be found at www.obwb.ca/wcqi

READ MORE: TOTA tops in responsible tourism again

READ MORE: Airplane with landing gear issues lands safely at Kelowna airport


@VernonNews
newsroom@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Kelowna man found dead in van on Vernon road

Foul play is not suspected in death of 39-year-old found Saturday, Aug. 1

Fires ignite on Revelstoke’s Mt. Begbie; Kamloops Fire Centre blazes holding

Crews working throughout region over holiday weekend to contain wildfires

QUIZ: How much do you know about British Columbia?

On this B.C. Day long weekend, put your knowledge of our province to the test

Water down at Lake Country mobile home park

Residents at Creek Run mobile home park have been without running water for more than a week

Fourteen blazes sparked in Kamloops Fire Centre

Lightning the suspected cause of all fires but one; cause of Solco Creek blaze remains unknown

VIDEO: Otter pups learn to swim at B.C. wildlife rescue facility

Watch Critter Care’s Nathan Wagstaffe help seven young otters go for their first dip

Reported Big White wildfire dubbed ‘smoke chase’

Crews responded to the area but could not locate a fire

Alleged impaired driver sparks small wildfire near Lytton after crash: B.C. RCMP

Good Samaritans prevented the blaze from getting out of control

Wildfire in West Kelowna’s Rose Valley grows to 3 hectares

The fire was first reported at around 2:30 p.m. on Aug. 2.

Travel restrictions inspiring co-operation in border communities

Small border towns are asking for exemption to travel ban

B.C. First Nation adopts ‘digital twinning’ software to better manage territory

Software allows users to visualize what a mountain might look like if the trees on its slopes were logged

All inquiry recommendations implemented after fatal Port Hardy RCMP shooting: Ministry

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. cleared the RCMP officers involved of wrongdoing

Most Read