Steering Committee for a Healthy Lake Scugog

Steering Committee for a Healthy Lake Scugog

Chair – Bobbie Drew, Regional Councillor

Vice-Chair –

Tom Rowett, Mayor of the Township of Scugog

Councillor Don Kett

Beth McEachern, Trent-Severn Waterways, Parks Canada

Debbie Balika, Water Quality Specialist, KRCA

 Office of MP Erin O’Toole

Justin McLean, Office of MPP Granville Anderson

Barbara Karthein, President, Scugog Lake Stewards Inc. (SLS)

Pat Bunting, Director, Scugog Lake Stewards Inc. (SLS)

Bill Eull, Chairman LSEP Fundraising Sub-committee

Dave Mowat, Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation

Colin Higgins, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources

John Mackey, Owner Port Perry Marina representing recreational boating and marinas around Lake Scugog

Terry Vos, Vos’ Independent – Shoreline business owner

Carolyn Hall, – Shoreline owner and resident

 Public Works and Parks, Municipality of Scugog

Secretary:   Kim Cox, Scugog

This group was formed in 2013 to work on in-lake conditionsInvasive Species in Lake Scugog.  Previous to that much had been done to understand the dynamics of our Lake and develop overall masterplans for the lake and its watershed through the Lake Scugog Environmental Management Plan (LSEMP) and the Port Perry Stormwater Management Plan.  During the time the science was being done for the LSEMP, it was considered that the Region and the Municipality had no jurisdiction over the lake itself and that it was in the hands of the Trent-Severn Waterway, Parks Canada only.

The Scugog Lake Stewards pushed at this supposed limit and wished to help the lake in an holistic way:  Help reduce the problem of invasive aquatic plants throughout the lake, increase lake depth, and improve the useability and aesthetics of Port Perry bay and rowing club bay (Kent Bay).  In 2012 nature dealt the lake and especially the lake shore close to Port Perry a nasty blow.  Its newly created, scenic waterfront area was inundated with weed and algae and the water levels was exceptionally low because of drought causing boat traffic to drop drastically. (In 2016, we again experienced drought, a drought that saw water levels drop to historic levels by mid-summer.)

This was the incentive to bring all the parties with jurisdiction or interests around the lake together to share concerns and work on solutions. Thus the Working Group for a Healthy Lake Scugog was formed with our MP, the Hon. Erin O’Toole attending the first session and continuing to receive information and encouraging the group on to their goals.

As part of this group the Stewards researched a wide range of solutions and chased the science to determine whether they might be the slightest bit practical for our lake — solutions such as various types of aeration, benthic mats, harvesting and several more esoteric ideas. The only method that appeared to solve the muck depth, overabundance of lake plants and algae problem with any validity appeared to be dredging out the muck, nutrients, weeds and their roots and seeds and pollutants.  The question was, however, how big a project was it, how much would the Trent-Severn Waterway allow and how we could prevent it from just filling in again quickly.

It was then that Kawartha Conservation with funds from Durham Region drew up a Request for Proposal for a project to fulfill our needs. This proposal which went out to a wide range of environmental engineering firms, drew in several excellent proposals. Their design ideas were presented to the Steering Committee for their comment in the late spring. The design based on comments from that meeting will be presented to the committee on August 7, 2016 — then it will go to Council, then if approved it will go out to the public for comment.

A fundraising committee has been formed under the Chairmanship of Dr. Bill Eull with Barbara Karthein, Honourary Chair.