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Saturday , 28 November 2020

Moose Lake Weir to be removed

Province looking at removing the weir in 2021, but timeline is fuzzy

The Moose Lake Weir is roughly scheduled to be removed in 2021, but there are many hoops left to jump through before that happens.

In August 2019, the M.D. received a letter from the province to start putting the wheels in motion to remove the weir located downstream of Moose Lake on Moose Lake River.

However, there are still unknowns on when the required environmental approvals will be given plus public consultation.

The removal of the weir was one of three solutions in an environmental study that would help lower water levels in Moose Lake, which reached critical heights in 2017.

Alberta Transportation is now handling the project and are the final stages of awarding the word to an engineering consulting firm.

“They came back and they said that they’ve actually made the decision to go ahead with the decommissioning,” said Reeve Greg Sawchuk on The Morning After.

“It was turned over Alberta transportation to actually facilitate that. And now there are a couple things–they did mention that there’s consultation and First Nations consultation as well that’s necessary before that happens. And so likely an engineering firm will be hired, and they may come out and do some of that work for them.”

Kellie Nichiporik, chair of the Moose Lake Watershed Society, is against removing the weir she said in October 2019 because the damage it may cause to the fish, plus it would not help flooding problems.

She said at that time the other two solutions in the study, removing the beaver dams and marshes, would be more effective.

Reeve Greg Sawchuk said on Thursday it’s unlikely they’d be able to touch the marshlands or the beaver dams.

M.D. council is planning to acquire Access Road Plan 852 1129, the road that leads to the weir, as the road provides the only access to the M.D.-owned quarter section and a privately-owned gravel pit.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.