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Wilderness Committee shining spotlight on irrigation in Westman

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An environmental watchdog group is taking issue with irrigation in western Manitoba, and is once again asking the province to step in.

The Wilderness Committee is calling on the government to revoke the environmental licence that allows the Daly Irrigation Development group (DIDG) to draw water from the Little Saskatchewan River in the Westman region. According to the Wilderness Committee, DIDG is operating more irrigation pumps than its licence allows, and is doing this before an analytical report of the land to be irrigated is completed.

Eric Reder, campaign director at the Wilderness Committee, says his organization made several appeals to review DIDG’s licence in July 2012, but hasn’t heard back from officials.

"For more than a year, the province has failed to deal with problems raised in appeal," Reder said in a statement. "Meanwhile, DIDG is not even conforming to the licence as issued. Manitobans deserve better environmental protection from their government."

Reder says the issue at Little Saskatchewan River is just one of several concerns his group has with the environmental licensing practice and the "flagrant disregard" for the province’s Environment Act from industry and government.

 

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