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North Saskatchewan River Basin Council Newsletter - Spring 2018
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Spring 2018

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Canadian Agriculture Partnership program launches in April

The Growing Forward 2 Program, which included the Farm Stewardship Program, the Farm and Ranch Infrastructure Programs, and many other funding opportunities, is now replaced with the Canadian Agriculture Partnership Program (CAP). Details will be announced soon.

Growing Interest in Soil Health   

Over the past 5 years, the Agri-Environmental Group Plan Technicians in our watershed hosted many producer workshop to educate and raise awareness about Soil Health, Carbon Sequestration, Invasive Weeds, Abandoned Well Decommissioning and Grazing and Winter Feeding Practices. Through the implementation of Beneficial Management Practices, producers received funding and improved the environmental footprint on their farms and demonstrated good land stewardship.
Recently, there has been a lot of talk about soil health, and a shift to more regenerative type farming is being observed. At recent soil health workshops in Unity and Glaslyn, producers learned about the relationship between fungi and bacteria in the soil. The microbial balance in soils are becoming bacteria dominant and soils are becoming compacted because of the lack of organic matter. The imbalance of microorganisms in the soil can impact the soil's ability to store water which increases the vulnerability to drought or floods in extreme climate conditions. One way to increase organic matter is by poly-cropping or inter-cropping, which is seeding a diverse and multi-species of plants with different root systems. Healthy soil is the foundation for food production, but also serves other functions. Soil is critical to the health of ground and surface waters and the overall ecosystem, and sequesters significant amounts of carbon from the atmosphere.

Qualified Person Support for Agricultural Water Management

NSRBC staff attended a Qualified Person (QP) Training Course offered by Water Security Agency (WSA) and is now able to assist land owners in the preparation of a drainage application. This includes mapping of wetlands and drainage works, securing legal land control, communicating with all parties involved and designing any mitigation works (flow controls, erosion control). WSA's Agricultural Water Management Strategy requires all drainage works to be approved which ensures that any impacts from the drainage works are reduced and that landowners can operate their drainage works for the term of the drainage approval. As well, if the landowner sells the land and the approval is registered on title, the drainage approval will run with the land for the term of the approval.

Natural Edge Shoreline Restoration Funding available

This year, NSRBC is partnering with Watersheds Canada and the Saskatchewan Association of Watersheds to promote the restoration of shoreline through the Natural Edge program. This provides an opportunity for home and cabin owners to restore their shoreline to a natural state, while still allowing water access and a lovely view. We provide a free site visit with landowners to discuss shoreline concerns, provide recommendations and assess planting conditions. A personalized planting plan is created, which includes photos of selected planting areas and plant species.The desires of the landowner drive the plan, and all advice is optional. The cost to landowners is approximately 25 per cent of the total costs of their site. NSRBC will coordinate the ordering, delivery, and planting of all the plants on your shoreline. We will provide all the tools, materials, and labour to complete the project. Landowners can participate in the planting, but it is voluntary. Please note that site visits are scheduled on a first come first served basis. Contact us to book your spring site visit.

Drinking Water Risk Assessments for Communities

Following the Husky Energy oil spill in July 2016 it became very clear how vulnerable communities are if their main water source becomes compromised. With funding provided by Water Security Agency, NSRBC conducted a rapid risk assessment for the drinking water sources of all towns and villages in the Saskatchewan River, Beaver River and Eagle Creek watersheds to prioritize communities for source water protection planning. The assessment included the delineation of water sources such as deep or shallow wells or surface water and the identification of potential sources of contamination such as urban and industrial development and agricultural runoff, while accounting for population and source water ownership.

Copyright © 2018 NSRBC, All rights reserved.
 
Our mailing address is:
North Saskatchewan River Basin Council
Box 458
Hafford, SK
S0J 1A0

306-441-3119 | 306-549-2360
info@nsrbc.ca

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North Saskatchewan River Basin Council (NSRBC) · Box 458 · Hafford, SK S0J 1A0 · Canada

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