INDUSTRY NEWS CONSERVING WETLANDS COULD SAVE CANADIANS MILLIONS IN FLOOD DAMAGE, REPORT SAYS Leaving wetlands in their natural state could reduce the financial costs of flooding by nearly 40 per cent, according to a recent report from the University of Waterloo. Researchers at Waterloo’s Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation, found that avoiding wetland loss could lead to substantial savings for Canadian communities that experience flooding. In compiling the report, researchers compared the financial costs of a major flood event in urban and rural areas, where wetlands were left in their natural A University of Waterloo study state, versus where a computer model suggests that if a major fall flood were to occur in Canada, the financial simulated wetlands loss. The modelling showed that if a major costs of flooding in rural and urban areas would be 29 and 38 per cent fall flood were to occur, the financial costs lower, respectively, with wetlands in of flooding in rural and urban areas would their natural state versus being lost be 29 and 38 per cent lower, respectively, due to development. with wetlands in their natural state versus being lost due to development, the centre said in a news release. “With the flooding events in recent history, it has become clear that the human and financial costs of these events are substantial,” said Prof. Blair Feltmate, the head of the centre and one of the report’s authors. “With the ever-increasing financial burden of flooding to Canadians, it is remarkable that a practical and cost-effective means to alleviate flood risk is readily available – that is, simply leave natural wetlands natural.” The researchers used two locations in Ontario – one rural and one urban – where flood damage costs avoided were calculated using average historic insurance claims data and provincial flood damage estimates from Ontario and Alberta. These flood damage costs estimates took into account the costs of damages to building structures and their contents. The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and Ducks Unlimited Canada funded the report. OGWA FUNDRAISING GOLF TOURNAMENT TO BENEFIT SCHOLARSHIPS FOR FLEMING COLLEGE DRILLING AND BLASTING STUDENTS The Ontario Ground Water Association will host its first golf tournament to raise funds for scholarship awards for graduates of Fleming College’s resources drilling and blasting program. The OGWA’s aim is to raise funds that can be held in an interest-earning account to be dispersed each year to the recipients at its annual convention. “It is important to recognize the academic achievements, year to year, of deserving students and welcome them into the ground water community,” said Paul Conrad of the association’s board of directors. The event will be held at the Elmira Golf Club in Elmira, Ont., on Friday, Sept. 29. Check-in time is 12 noon followed by a shotgun start at 1 p.m. followed by a prime rib and chicken cordon bleu dinner. Those wishing to join in this day of fun and fundraising can contact Anne Gammage through the OGWA website (www.ogwa.ca) or call 519-245-7194. If you can’t attend, you can still help support the industry’s next generation by making a donation through the association. Funds earmarked for the scholarship will be set aside for this purpose. FRIESEN DRILLERS THROWS 125TH BIRTHDAY OPEN HOUSE On July 14, Friesen Drillers held an open house to celebrate its 125th birthday. The family business has seen many changes since C.K. Friesen sunk his first well back in 1892. Friesen Drillers is owned and operated by the fourth generation of the Friesen family with the fifth generation already out in the field. The company’s headquarters in Steinbach, Man., opened the doors of its private museum to host customers, dignitaries, vendors and the public. Inside the company’s showroom are original 1900 Chapman Drill Rig 4, one of the first motorized rigs; its 1936 Chevrolet pickup; older 6 GROUND WATE R CANADA | FALL 2017 gas pumps; as well as different sizes and shapes of drill bits. A blacksmith shop representing founder C.K. Friesen’s original trade was on display, as well as ground water finding equipment. About 20 people work at the company and it has three branches in addition to Steinbach: Andrew and Sons in Saskatchewan, Paddock Drilling in Brandon, Man., and Mel’s Wells in Ontario. Sister and brother Kim and Jason Friesen head up the business. We congratulate Friesens on more than a century of success!