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North Thompson drought rating raised to Level 4

The province has also released water into the Nicola River to help spawning salmon

CBC News, Aug 18, 2015

Low water levels in the Nicola River could affect spawning salmon. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

Low water levels in the Nicola River could affect spawning salmon. (Jonathan Hayward/Canadian Press)

The B.C. government has upgraded the drought rating for the North Thompson region to its highest level because of low stream flows throughout the region.

Local municipalities may respond to the rating change by increasing or modifying water usage restrictions. Residents of the North Thompson are asked to conserve water as best they can.

Level 4 drought ratings are now in effect for much of the province, including:

  • South Thompson
  • Nicola
  • Okanagan
  • Lower Fraser
  • South Coast
  • Vancouver Island

Increasing flows on Nicola River for salmon

The province has also announced that it has released a “pulse” of water into the Nicola River that runs through the region to assist spawning salmon.

The water comes from storage at the dam on Nicola Lake near Merritt.

Salmon are currently congregating at the mouth of the Nicola River and, according to the province, aren’t able to continue their journey because of low water levels.

The province warned residents that although the river may appear to have more water, the Nicola region is still at a Level 4 drought rating.

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