Nunavut declares state of emergency over Iqaluit water shortage

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IQALUIT, Nunavut — The Nunavut government has declared a two-week state of emergency over a water shortage in Iqaluit.

Joanna Quassa, the acting minister of community and government services, says it's meant to ensure the city can get necessary regulatory approvals to immediately begin replenishing its reservoir.

The city declared its own state of emergency last week due to a lack of precipitation and flows into the Apex River, Iqaluit's secondary water resupply source, being at a 40-year-low.

As a result, Lake Geraldine, which serves as the water reservoir for Iqaluit, would not be replenished before freeze-up.

The city said it was working to get regulatory approval to pump additional water from the nearby Unnamed Lake into the Apex River then into Lake Geraldine.

Quassa says the territorial government is working closely with the city and has agreed to provide equipment to support the pumping operation.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Aug. 19, 2022.

The Canadian Press