Snowpack Update – Get Prepared for Stage 2 Water Conservation Regulations

Tags:  2024 | News Release
Date Released: June 5, 2024

The snowpack at Chapman and Edwards Lake has melted and the Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) is advising that Stage 2 Water Conservation Regulations are expected to be in place in the coming weeks. While recent June rains have provided some relief to our water supply, Environment Canada and the BC Provincial Government are forecasting a hot summer and asking residents to get prepared.

SCRD staff went to Chapman and Edwards lakes last week to conduct a snowpack survey to find that there is no snow left. This is amongst the earliest the SCRD has seen a snowpack melt since snow surveys began.  The images below show the difference between the amount of snow at Chapman Lake in June 2022, May 2023 and May 2024.

Image: Snowpack comparison between June 2022, May 2023 and May 2024.


Images: Left shows Chapman Lake in May 2024, the right shows Chapman Lake with snow in May 2023


The data seen on the Sunshine Coast is consistent with many other communities in the province who are also preparing for drought this summer.

A video, further explaining the impact of a low snowpack on water systems can be found by clicking here.

“With such a low snowpack, we will need to take action and implement Stage 2 water conservation regulations in the coming weeks which is earlier than past years,” says General Manager of Infrastructure Services Remko Rosenboom. “The melting of the snowpack in early spring plays a huge role in the recharge of our water systems. Therefore, SCRD staff are doing all they can to prepare for the adverse effects of predicted warm and dry weather on our community.”

A message on lawn watering

With drier weather in the forecast, the SCRD is appealing to residents to resist the urge to water lawns when it starts to get warmer. In previous years, the SCRD has seen significant increases in outdoor water use as soon as the weather warmed up, in some cases, SCRD utility operators had to work through the night to maintain the demand on the Chapman Water Treatment Plant.

If residents in all water systems can keep conservation top of mind then there is potential that Stage 2 water conservation regulations may not be needed as soon as mid-June.

For context, one hour of lawn sprinkling uses on average 960 litres of water. Cutting down on lawn sprinkling will make a big difference.  In comparison, the SCRD is asking that residents maintain a target of 200 litres of use per person per day when the weather is hot and dry.

The next drought response update will be provided to the public during the SCRD’s Committee of the Whole meeting on June 13, 2024. Links to watch this update will be available at and the video will be posted to after the meeting has taken place

Wondering what the SCRD and other local governments are doing to increase supply on the Sunshine Coast? A water supply projects and initiatives update was provided to the community in mid-May, you can find this update here.