Water Quality Monitoring Cosens Bay

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North Okanagan Regional District

Project Description:

This study provided valuable information on the influence that septic systems may be having on water quality in areas where well established residential development is directly adjacent to a water body.

The RDNO hired Larratt Aquatic Consulting (LAC) to sample three locations in the Cosens Bay area of Kalamalka Lake (fronting the developed lands) and one sampling site in an undeveloped area as a reference control site. The sampling occurred in conjunction with the existing Kalamalka Lake Long-Term Monitoring Project which runs monthly from May to October. The water samples were sent to Caro Labs in Kelowna for testing. Algae and microflora samples were examined and identified by LAC.

The impact of cottage development on Cosens Bay water quality was minor and not statistically significant. No discrete influence from creeks or springs was detected in the 2014 water quality samples. Because the water quality results did not show significant differences between Cosens Bay foreshore and the control foreshore of Kalamalka Lk Prov. Park - where water quality differences should have been greatest, we can assume that the impact of the Cosens Bay cottage area on Kalamalka Lake as a whole would be below statistical significance and likely below detection limits.

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