Extreme low flows and increased water temperatures in the Koksilah River are threatening the survival of fish populations including anadromous and resident trout, including steelhead. In order to maintain flows in the river, the provincial government has issued a Fish Protection Order which temporarily suspends use of surface and groundwater for industrial purposes and irrigation of forage crops (e.g. hay, corn) from August 17 through September 30, 2019.
This order, under the new Water Sustainability Act, is an unprecedented step for the province to ensure that limited water resources are allocated to maintain threatened fish populations by restricting other, less essential water uses. The order applies to all holders of industrial and irrigation water licenses as well as to groundwater wells in aquifers which are connected to the Koksilah River. The map below shows the approximate area affected by this order.