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The CEO for the Pembina Valley Water Co-op is feeling positive about the water supply situation as we carry through a very dry spring.

Levels on Stephenfield Lake are at 100 per cent of target and the level of the Red River at Emerson is in a good place as well, according Greg Archibald who is the CEO for the Water Co-op.

"It's not an issue of water availability, but more about watching the Letellier plant and the usage on that facility, said Archibald."

The challenge for the regional utility comes in late May to June when crop spraying season begins in earnest.

Crop spraying requires a significant amount of water and last year that demand left the co-op's treatment plant in Letellier struggling to supply some local communities with their water needs due to its limited capacity.

The utility is hoping to mitigate that situation this year with some early maintenance on the filters at the Letellier plant so that their able to deal with the higher demand.

Bringing the new Stephenfield water plant online should also create an advantage this year, which was not an option last year. That plant has doubled the co-op's capacity to make potable water from the lake.

"Essentially that will allow us to provide water from Stephenfield down to the Carman-Sperling area that we would normally supply from Morris. That in turn allows us to take more water from Morris down into the Winkler area. So, that's a way to offload some of the pressure on the Letellier plant."

In addition to those options, the city of Winkler has agreed to draw the majority of its water from the local aquifer during the summer months starting in mid June, reducing its usage by almost half.

"That will also help us as we move into the spraying season," said Archibald.

Even though water supply levels look positive, Archibald encourages users throughout the region to continue to be smart about how they use water.

"We can't predict exactly what the weather will be like, or predict exactly if spraying season will happen all at the same time. So, because of all those things, we'd like to encourage people to use water wisely over the next period of time."

However, the situation could change if the dry conditions continue and temperatures begin to soar.

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