Low water status returns to normal | November 12, 2020

Peterborough, Ontario (November 12, 2020) After experiencing five months of drought conditions, the Otonabee Region watershed water status returns to normal.

This October, the precipitation receipts were largely between 69% and 81% of normal, however evaporation and transpiration rates in October were significantly less than the water supply, which resulted in improved soil moisture, surface water flows, and groundwater levels. The Otonabee Region Low Water Response Team is therefore moving the status from the Level 1 Low Water condition to a Normal condition.

“Signs of drought in the Region first emerged in May,” explains Otonabee Conservation’s Water Resources Technologist, Gordon Earle, “There are now several indications that the five-month long drought is over.”

Otonabee Conservation’s ongoing monthly analysis of watershed conditions reveal the following indicators, allowing a return to normal status:

  • Below normal air temperatures in October indicate below normal evaporation and transpiration rates
  • Three-month precipitation totals for the period ending October 31st were within normal range, signifying that short-term drought and minor supply problems are no longer a concern
  • Eighteen-month precipitation receipts (May 2019 to October 2020) indicate no long-term drought concerns 
  • Average monthly surface water flows for October have edged above the Level 1 drought threshold

The Otonabee Region Water Response Team, with representatives from local municipalities, water management agencies, the community, provincial and federal agencies, and Otonabee Conservation, will continue to monitor and review the situation.

More information on the Low Water Response Program is available on the Otonabee Conservation website at otonabeeconservation.com.

more information contact:
Dan Marinigh | CAO\Secretary-Treasurer
Otonabee Conservation
dmarinigh@otonabeeconservation.com | 705-745-3238 x222